On Tuesday night, reports of a possible deal that would send the center of the Grizzlies Marc Gasol to the Hornets warmed up, with a combination of Malik Monk's wings and / or Michael Kidd-Gilchrist as the main return to Memphis.
But league sources told Sporting News that the Hornets and Grizzlies do not have an agreement in place, and that there is growing skepticism on both sides that a trade can be used before Thursday's deadline for the NBA trade. The Hornets have been interested in Gasol for some time, but an agreement has not progressed.
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Gasol was out of Tuesday's game against Minnesota, fueling speculation that it would be traded until late evening. Monk played only 14 minutes in losing Charlotte to the Clippers, and he was seen leaving the locker room early, before he could talk to the reporters. (It's worth noting that the monk who leaves the locker room before reporters come in is not uncommon.) But the two were still on their respective lists, as Tuesday night became Wednesday morning.
Memphis started the NBA trade season three weeks ago, telling the league teams that it was willing to part with Gasol and the point guard Mike Conley. Each has been a mainstay for Memphis in the last 12 seasons, helping to form the backbone of Grizzlies' slow-paced "Grind" style gameplay.
The Grizzlies reached the postseason seven consecutive times during that period, finally ending in the lottery last season. It is almost certain that Memphis will lose the playoffs again this year – despite a series of two-game wins, the Grizzlies have 4-17 in their last 21 games.
Charlotte is between 26 and 27 in total, with a front office looking forward to a place in the playoff. But the Hornets are wary of facing Gasol, who has a $ 25.5 million next-season player option, which could be a heavy burden for the Hornets unless the Grizzlies are willing to accept some of the bad wages of Charlotte.