The Memphis Grizzlies began their rebuild last season and continued it on Wednesday by trading guard Mike Conley to the Utah Jazz. After moving veteran center Marc Gasol previously, the team failed to get a deal for Conley done during the 2018-19 NBA season, but just prior to Thursday’s draft managed to come to terms with the Jazz.
The news of the trade was first reported by The Athletic’s Shams Charania, who revealed it will include Jae Crowder, Kyle Korver, Grayson Allen and draft picks heading to the Grizzlies.
After the initial report of the deal was revealed, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski followed it up with the terms of the picks. This includes Utah’s No. 23 selection in the 2019 NBA Draft along with a protected 2020 first-rounder which will convey as a late-lottery selection in 2020 or 2021. From there, it could become a “lightly-protected pick” from 2022-24, per Wojnarowski.
We’re going to take a look at the Jazz roster and starting lineup following the trade, as it will make them one of the more intriguing teams to watch in the Western Conference. Beyond that, it also helps bolster their NBA title chances in the immediate future.
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Utah Jazz Roster & Starting Lineup After Mike Conley Trade
*Notates expected starter
C: Rudy Gobert*, Tony Bradley
PF: Derrick Favors*, Georges Niang
SF: Joe Ingles*, Royce O’Neale
SG: Donovan Mitchell*
PG: Mike Conley*, Dante Exum, Raul Neto
It’s worth noting that Derrick Favors and Georges Niang both have team options, as Hoops Hype details. There’s a chance that with Conley being acquired and boasting a large contract that it could lead to Favors heading to free agency and the team going another direction at power forward. With that said, moving Crowder in the deal complicates things a bit.
The contracts of Niang, Favors, Raul Neto and Royce O’Neale are also non-guaranteed, per Spotrac, so there’s a chance the Jazz roster in 2019-20 could look quite a bit different. The addition of Conley is certainly big for their immediate outlook and creates one of the stronger backcourts in the NBA.
Mike Conley Replaces Ricky Rubio With Utah Jazz
There was some chatter last season that Ricky Rubio could potentially be dealt, which would make sense as he was on an expiring deal. While that didn’t pan out, Rubio will now head to free agency and likely draw a decent market in the process. This left the Jazz in need of a new point guard, and they added a veteran in Conley who’ll immediately step in and make an impact on both ends of the floor.
Conley, who’s 31 years old currently, averaged a career-high 21.1 points along with 6.4 assists, 3.4 rebounds and 1.3 steals per game last season. He shot 43.8 percent from the field and 36.4 percent from beyond the arc. Conley has averaged 15.3 points or more in each of the past five seasons while topping 5.4 assists per game in four of the five years.