2022 will be a pivotal year for the Memphis Grizzlies. Since the rebuilding of the 2019-2020 season, there has been no end to the discussion of Twitter trading star players like Bradley Beal or Zach LaVine to Beale Street, the home of the Blues.
In fact, the Grizzlies do have enough potential players as a trade package. Over the next two offseasons, they will see the contracts of Kyle Anderson, Tyus Jones, Dillon Brooks, Steven Adams and Brandon Clarke expire. They also have three first-round picks in 2022. All three first-round rights may still be included in the deal package if desired. However, due to the Warriors’ excellent record, the Warriors’ 2022 first-round pick has lost some value.
However, Zach Kleiman and the Grizzlies’ front office still use their talent, draft capital and salary flexibility to make the All-Star trade to Memphis an infinite possibility.
Although the Grizzlies may make roster changes in 2022, the recent performance of the team has caused some changes in the discussion of the trade.
And a big reason for this comes from the rise of Desmond Bane.
Desmond Bane and Ja Morant’s progress this season is definitely the biggest surprise yet for the Grizzlies. The Grizzlies considered Desmond Bane’s player development, traded out the original starter Grayson Allen, and gave Bane the ball to play in summer league.
Desmond Bane’s progress this season has brought him more attention, and he has joined the discussion of the Most Improved Player award (MIP). And now it has become one of the common topics in major Internet broadcasts. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst hinted on the webcast that the Ja Morant and Desmond Bane duo are the current top-five backcourt duo in the NBA.
Analysts are comparing Desmond Bane to second-year Klay Thompson, and a stunning Dec. 27 post proves how good Desmond Bane is this season:
Desmond Bane’s performance this season:
— Total points better than Tyler Herro
— Outperforms Seth Curry in points per game
— More 3-pointers than Damian Lillard
— More 3-pointers per game than Trae Young
— Shooting better than Jaylen Brown
— Outperforms Devin Booker in 3-point shooting
— Free throw percentage better than Steph Curry
Looking at some of these stats, it’s clear that his importance to the Grizzlies has grown. He might have been in the same group as Dillon Brooks, De’Anthony Melton and Brandon Clarke before this season. Now, he seems to be closer to Jaren Jackson Jr. than those guys, and Bane’s performance is bound to affect the Grizzlies’ future team planning.
Bane, who only focused on 3-point shooting last season, has increased his offense this season. This year he became a more menacing 3-point shooter. Becoming more proficient off the ball and becoming a second playmaker next to Ja Morant.
By increasing Bane’s ball-handling ratio, his pull-up jumper also has a “quality and quantity” improvement.
According to Cleaning the Glass, his assists have dropped to 72 percent this season from 81 percent last season, and he has also increased his mid-range shooting percentage this season from 26 percent in his rookie season to 32 percent.
Devin Booker, Chris Paul, Bradley Beal or Khris Middleton are all specialists in the mid-range, and Bane is going for those guys.