Trade Alert: Memphis Grizzlies and New Orleans Pelicans

By: Zach Blaine

The New Orleans Pelicans have acquired Jonas Valanciunas, as well as the 17th and 51st picks in the draft, from the Memphis Grizzlies, in exchange for Steven Adams, Eric Bledsoe, the 10th pick, the 40th pick, and lastly the Lakers’ 2022 first-round pick (top 10 protected).

What This Means for the Pelicans
With this move, the Pelicans have first upgraded their center position as Valanciunas averaged 17 points and 12.5 rebounds across 62 games this past season. They have also freed up cap space ahead of free agency. General manager, David Griffin, will look to bolster the roster around Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram.

What This Means for the Pelicans on Draft Night
The Pelicans elected to move back in the draft with this move, now sitting at 17th overall. While previously having Corey Kispert as a great fit for the Pelicans at 10th, he might be selected already so they will have to look elsewhere. A few names to keep an eye for the Pelicans at the 17th pick are Chris Duarte, Cam Thomas and Trey Murphy.

What This Means for the Grizzlies
This move indicates that the Grizzlies don’t see the contract of Eric Bledsoe as too much of a burden and that the addition of veteran Steven Adams will have an impact on the locker-room. Eric Bledsoe and Dillon Brooks defending in the backcourt could cause nightmares for opposing teams in the West.

What This Means for the Grizzlies on Draft Night
Memphis now moves up in the draft, where they have a plethora of options to choose from. With recent draft success such as Desmond Bane, Xavier Tillman, Dillon Brooks, Jaren Jackson Jr., and the obvious Ja Morant, the Grizzlies scouting department has done an excellent job as of late. Some players the Grizzlies could be looking to add could be Keon Johnson, James Bouknight or even Moses Moody.

Who do you think fared better in this trade?