Jae Crowder
Is Jae Crowder a building block or trade piece for Memphis? (Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

I don’t think anybody thought the Memphis Grizzlies would be this good, this soon. Memphis currently holds the 8th seed in the West after having the 2nd pick in the draft in the offseason. Rebuilding the Grizzlies was hard. This next part might be even harder. Does Memphis start to buy or do they sell off a few more pieces to build a more serious contender in the future? How does Jae Croweder fit into that equation?

Is Jae Crowder a building block or trade piece for Memphis? The need for wings is a growing commodity in the NBA. It’s why Memphis is holding out hope that they can move Andre Iguodala. Somebody could use Iggy and they want compensation for him. Iggy isn’t the only veteran wing on the team that should have value. Crowder does too.

This was from Zach Lowe during his latest trade deadline piece:

“The Grizzlies have sought a first-round pick from a long list of teams inquiring about Jae Crowder, sources say. I would bet heavy against them getting one; Crowder is shooting 29.7% from deep. They could probably snare two second-rounders, but that will present Memphis an interesting choice: sitting at .500, as one of the feel-good stories in the league, should they deal a starter in exchange for future assets?

The answer: Probably. They don’t lose much dropping from Crowder to Kyle Anderson.

The flip side: Crowder is eligible for a contract extension with a Year 1 salary of up to $11.5 million, and given this summer’s cap environment, that could make sense — if Memphis has interest.”

I think that is your answer. Hold out for the first round pick, even if it’s a late first round pick. No reason to dump him for two second rounders unless they are early second round picks. Memphis has some leverage here. They can give Crowder a contract extension with a first year salary of up to $11.5 million. That’s not a bad deal and that type of contract is always moveable in any deal.

I have to admit, I do miss Crowder. He’s just a good glue guy to have on the team. He’s not as quick or mobile as he used to be but he can still defend and knock down shots when he has to. I’m not sure how much he really helps the team win and his net rating of -4.6 isn’t’ helping his case. Crowder, 29, probably has maximum value now and he’s only going to age.

People think that once you start winning, things get easier. What’s easy is tanking. Now comes the hard part. Building out the rest of the roster while building around Ja Morant, Jaren Jackson Jr, and maybe even Dillon Brooks. What do the Grizzlies do with Jae Crowder?