The order of the upcoming NBA draft has become increasingly hard to predict and perhaps the most confusing variable is the Memphis Grizzlies.
When the Grizzlies are on the clock, it’s entirely possible they trade down to perhaps relieve some cap space by shedding Chandler Parson‘s contract. It seems several of the top prospects have not met with Memphis and realistic targets have not shared their medical history with the organization.
Duke’s Wendell Carter Jr. has been the exception to that rule and could be their best option when they are on the clock.
Sean Deveney speculated that based on workout reports, it’s entirely possible that Carter ends up with the Grizzlies (via Sporting News):
“In a draft in which four or five players could be tabbed a wildcard, Duke center Wendell Carter ranks among them. Carter is one of the few top prospects to work out for the Grizzlies, who own the No. 4 pick and have been entertaining offers to trade out of the spot, and could be the favorite to go to Memphis if the team keeps that pick.”
Carter, 19, would share the frontcourt with big man Marc Gasol and provide another option as a two-way threat on both offense and defense. He averaged 13.7 points, 9.1 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game as a freshman for Duke.
If the team decides to keep their pick, perhaps they could snag him, especially since he has not avoided the organization. He has been described as a favorite of the front office and coaching staff in Memphis.
Earlier today, he told HoopsHype that he was “willing to go to any city” and do what he had to do to win. When asked, he had no issue with the market size or fit with Memphis.
Depending on how far they trade down, he could still be available as their primary target. His range is now between No. 6 overall and No. 10 overall in most mock drafts.
He had the best box plus-minus in his conference, which speaks to the value he would bring his team. The big man had the second-best player efficiency rating and total win shares in the ACC last season as well.