According to Ken Berger of CBSSports.com, “rival executives” believe the Memphis Grizzlies could be a potential trade destination for Houston Rockets guard Courtney Lee. Monday, Lee reportedly expressed concern that the Rockets could trade him before the Feb. 24 deadline, and it would appear those concerns are founded. Sam Smith of the Chicago Bulls’ official website says Houston is “set” in the backcourt with Aaron Brooks, Kyle Lowry, Kevin Martin, and Terrence Williams, leaving Lee as the odd man out.
Which brings us back to Berger’s report. The Grizzlies, says Berger, have their eyes on “a player who can help them down the stretch this season and an asset that can help them in the future.” Lee would seem to fit that bill, and Berger says Memphis would be willing to offer third-year guard O.J. Mayo, the third overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, in return for Lee.
As Berger notes, the whole scenario hinges upon Rockets GM Daryl Morey’s opinion of Mayo, whose stock has dropped this season as he’s struggled to adapt to a bench role, fought teammate Tony Allen on a team plane, and earned a league-mandated suspension for using a banned substance. Yet he’s just one season removed from averaging 17.5 points per game for the Grizzlies, shooting 45.8 percent from the floor and 38.3 percent on three-pointers. At 23, Mayo is younger than Lee and has far more upside.
Stay tuned to this StoryStream for updates on Rockets trade rumors as the deadline draws nearer. And be sure to visit The Dream Shake, SB Nation’s Rockets blog, for all things Rockets.