The Memphis Grizzlies are reportedly in “advanced discussions” (according to Shams Charania/The Athletic/Stadium) to potentially deal Andre Iguodala, but sadly, those discussions aren’t with the Los Angeles Lakers. Charania reports that the Miami Heat are the ones who are having discussions with the Grizzlies pertaining to the acquisition of Iguodala, with Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports reporting that the Heat have “Memphis’ attention”.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) February 6, 2020
Yahoo Sources. The Los Angeles Lakers have ventured down all avenues — including a last Hail Mary attempt — to seek a path to Andre Iguodala, but it is becoming apparent that Miami has Memphis’ attention right now.
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) February 6, 2020
The former NBA Finals MVP was traded to the Memphis Grizzlies in the summer to give the Golden State Warriors cap space to make room for the arrival of D’Angelo Russell. Many Lakers fans, and probably the organization itself too, were hoping that Iguodala would be bought out of his $17M per year contract. It was always going to be hard for the Lakers to be able to match that salary in a trade, with it being very likely the entire time that another team was going to sweep in and take the opportunity to trade for him. Chris Haynes/Yahoo Sports did report in the same tweet above that the Lakers made a “last Hail Mart attempt” to acquire him, but apparently it has fallen short due to Miami’s supposed better trade package.
There were multiple reports throughout this season that the Lakers would be one of Andre Iguodala’s top priorities if he were to get bought out. He would have filled a big hole in the Lakers roster, providing great wing defense to throw at the likes of the Clippers’ Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. He would have also brought more veteran and championship leadership to the Lakers’ roster which would have been valuable come playoff time.
As much as there were reports of the Lakers being on Iguodala’s wish list, there were just as many reports that the Grizzlies were always going to trade him as opposed to buying him out. Although the Grizzlies received a first-round pick from the Warriors in the trade, they wanted more assets for Iguodala filling a $17M hole on their roster while never playing. It’s assumed that they received those assets, and possibly more.
The Lakers will re-focus their attention elsewhere, as it appears their pursuit of Iguodala is dead in the water. We will report more later as more details pertaining to Miami’s pursuit and the Lakers’ proposed package become available.