Raptors' Valanciunas to return tonight on TSN

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Conley-Mike-USNews-012719-ftr-getty

The Memphis Grizzlies are working on deals with the Toronto Raptors and Detroit Pistons after Mike Conley Jr. and his representatives have made it clear they would prefer Conley not be traded to the Utah Jazz, ESPN insider Brian Windhorst said on The Jump.

The 34-year-old center is averaging 15.7 points, 8.6 rebounds and 4.7 assists over 53 games with the Grizzlies this season.

For a fevered few minutes there on Thursday afternoon, it looked like the National Basketball Association trade deadline music would stop and Masai Ujiri would still be looking for a chair. He also said that it's more likely that Marc Gasol is moved at the deadline than Conley. Unlike Ibaka, he's also developed into a reliable threat from 3-point range. Valanciunas is a solid player, but he doesn't make much sense for the Grizzlies long term, and neither does Miles. Keep an eye on a point guard-starved team, such as the Orlando Magic or Phoenix Suns, to make a run at Fultz.

Gasol's shooting should make him a natural fit alongside Kyle Lowry and Kawhi Leonard.




Gasol is slated to make $24.1 million USA this season and has a player option for $25.6 million next season. It's just a matter of how far they're willing to go to get him.

To go along with his scoring, Gasol is an excellent passer.

Amid other reports suggesting the Grizzlies are poised to ship Gasol to the Hornets, the Spanish center didn't play for Memphis as they hosted the Minnesota Timberwolves. He's now averaging 4.7 assists per game, the highest mark of his career and the second-most among centres this season behind only Nikola Jokic.

Valanciunas, Wright and Miles can become free agents next season. A one-time Defensive Player of the Year, Gasol is a high IQ defender and a strong rim protector who should only help an already elite defensive team. "I've been in rumours so many times I don't even look at it", joked Valanciunas according to TSN.

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