2020 Offseason Outlook - Memphis Grizzlies


Overview


At the conclusion of the 2019-2020 NBA season, the Memphis Grizzlies had a record of 34-39 which placed them at 9th in the Western Conference and 16th in the league. The Memphis Grizzlies have been one of the more exciting young teams to watch this season and were unlucky to miss out on the eighth seed in this year’s playoffs. Ja Morant has had an incredible rookie season, leading Memphis throughout the season and into their playoff hunt and he is likely to win rookie of the year for his efforts. The Grizzlies have also had impressive seasons from young players like Brandon Clarke, Jaren Jackson Jr and Dillon Brooks, making them one of the most exciting teams to watch looking forward. From here, the Grizzlies can only build on this season by continuing to developing their many young players and grow team chemistry as they look towards the playoffs in future seasons. The Grizzlies will now turn their attention to the 2020 offseason where they will likely make very few moves as they patiently develop their players and look further ahead to the 2021 offseason where there are more suitable free agents available.

Salary Cap


Currently, the Memphis Grizzlies have 11 players with guaranteed contracts for the 2020-2021 NBA offseason. Jontay Porter has a $1.5 million team option which I expect the Grizzlies to pick up. While Porter has been unable to earn any NBA minutes at this stage, he adds to the young potential of this team and Memphis believe he can become a useful player in the future which is why I believe they will bring him back. De’Anthony Melton, Yuta Watanabe and John Konchar will all be restricted free agents for Memphis. Josh Jackson and Anthony Tolliver will both enter 2020 free agency as unrestricted free agents. Due to trades made prior to the 2020 trade deadline, the Grizzlies will be entering the offseason over the salary cap but with an already fairly full roster leaving them little options. The Grizzlies will have a $9.2 million mid-lever exception available as well as multiple trade exceptions ranging from $766 thousand to $4.7 million.


Depth Chart –

Free Agency


The Memphis Grizzlies will enter free agency over the salary cap and will therefore project to make very little noise with signings. Their most important focus should be bringing back unrestricted free agent, Josh Jackson, with their mid-level exception. Josh Jackson is yet another young piece that the Grizzlies have been developing as part of their future core. He provides quality minutes off the bench and would be a good value contract if brought back on the mid-level exception. The Grizzlies should also look at bringing back restricted free agent, De’Anthony Melton to continue to provide some quality point guard minutes off the bench while adding to their plethora of young players. Finally, the Grizzlies can look at retaining unrestricted free agent, Anthony Tolliver, on a minimum deal. Tolliver can provide some veteran presence to the team which will be valuable amongst so many young players who are learning their way around the league. If the Grizzlies remain quiet and patient this offseason, they can look forward to the stacked 2021 offseason where they project to have significant salary cap room with the departure of Gorgui Dieng and his large contract and they can add to their young team with a potential star.


2020 Draft


The Memphis Grizzlies will take no major part in the 2020 NBA draft. Their first-found pick will go to the Boston Celtics and their second-round pick will go to New Orleans Pelicans leaving them with only the 40th projected overall pick from the Phoenix Suns.


Summary


The Memphis Grizzlies will enter the 2020 offseason with patience as their number one priority. They will look to retain some of their young free agents, leaving them with a lot of cap space to use in the much anticipated 2021 free agency period. They will also remain quiet in the draft with their lottery pick going to the Celtics. Overall, they will look at continuing to develop their plethora of young players, led by Ja Morant and will hope to make a second playoff run in the 2021 NBA season as they continue to be one of the most exciting teams to look forward to in the future.


Projected Depth Chart 2020/21 Season –

Players IN: N/A

Players OUT: N/A