The situation between Andre Iguodala and the Memphis Grizzlies has been a strange one all season, and it doesn’t appear to be reaching a resolution anytime soon (no matter how much the Los Angeles Lakers would “love” get him).
The Grizzlies have consistently postured through the media as though they have no intention of trading Iguodala, and in recent weeks some have theorized that Memphis might even try to get him to join its roster for a playoff push.
Today, courtesy of David Aldridge of The Athletic, we got confirmation that Iguodala has no interest in such a scenario, and this leak could signal that the veteran is growing a bit impatient in the lead-up to Thursday’s NBA trade deadline:
Iguodala and Memphis mutually agreed he would not report to the Grizzlies while the team tried to find a trade partner. The 36-year-old has yet to play after being traded by Golden State to the Grizzlies last summer.— David Aldridge (@davidaldridgedc) February 4, 2020
The benefits to Iguodala’s camp leaking this now are fairly obvious. For one, it sends a clear message to Memphis and league observers that he’s not playing for them this season, as well as letting teams he might not want to play for know that they shouldn’t expect him to suit up for them if they do trade for him. It’s not the exact same thing, but we saw with Anthony Davis last year how the latter tactic can really cool the market (and Iguodala isn’t even close to the player Davis is).
There are a couple of other things to unpack from that thread as well. For one, it’s not entirely clear who Iguodala’s list of “agreed-upon teams” is comprised of, although past reports have painted him as choosing between the Lakers and Clippers if bought out. It’s possible his trade list extends to other contenders, but it’s also possible it doesn’t. If that’s the case, there is reason to believe the Lakers may have an advantage in that their lead executive, Rob Pelinka, is Iguodala’s beloved former agent.
Given all the smoke out there, it seems far from a sure thing that any of this results in Iguodala ending up in a Lakers uniform. Either the Grizzlies will trade him, or he gets a year off before returning to the Golden State Warriors or signing with another contender.
It does seem to be far from a sure thing that another team will trade for Iguodala in this climate — unless it’s the Clippers or another team on his list — so maybe Memphis will cave and decide to save some money and buy Iguodala out. However, as things stand right now he doesn’t seem to be the most realistic option for the Lakers, who would have to waive a player to sign him anyway. There is still a little less than three days to go until the trade deadline, though, so we’ll see how this situation progresses.
You can keep track of every trade rumor involving the Lakers here, and for more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. You can follow Harrison on Twitter at @hmfaigen.