Grizzlies Trade For Knicks’ Mitchell Robinson In Bold Proposal

Mitchell Robinson, New York Knicks, Memphis Grizzlies, NBA Trade Rumors
NBA Analysis Network

The NBA is constantly evolving. How the game is played has changed dramatically, and it will continue to change. Sometimes, it feels like offense evolves at an exponential rate. At the same time, if you pay attention, defense is evolving alongside it. 

Is the drop coverage rim protector a dying breed? It can look that way. With more teams taking threes, denying layup and dunk attempts may have less significance.

More than ever, we’re seeing switch big men in starting lineups. If you don’t have one, you may still employ a defensive scheme that places your big man at the level. With that said, rim protection will always be useful – even if it’s function changes. 

For example, putting a traditional big man in drop becomes more tenable if you’ve got an elite roamer alongside him. The Memphis Grizzlies have realized this. They’ve been pairing Steven Adams with Defensive Player of the Year candidate Jaren Jackson Jr. for years.

Unfortunately, Adams has had to miss this whole season due to injury. Could the Grizzlies look to replace him with Mitchell Robinson of the New York Knicks? 

NBA Trade Proposal: Memphis Grizzlies Land New York Knicks’ Mitchell Robinson

Mitchell Robinson, Knicks, NBA
NBA Analysis Network
New York Knicks Receive: C Steven Adams, F Jake LaRavia, 2026 First-Round Pick (MEM) 
Memphis Grizzlies Receive: C Mitchell Robinson 

Of course, Adams isn’t the player that the Grizzlies are missing the most. Sure, his interior presence and general toughness are invaluable. They don’t mean much without a primary playmaker. Ja Morant is serving a suspension. Without him, the Grizzlies are lost. 

We may have underestimated the impact of his absence. The Grizzlies would be fine – wouldn’t they? Sure, they’ll struggle without Morant.

Still, Marcus Smart can hold down the fort. Desmond Bane can handle some extra ball-handling reps. All Memphis has to do is stay afloat until Morant returns – right? 

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Mitchell Robinson, New York Knicks, Memphis Grizzlies Updates

As it turns out, that’s been easier said than done. Without Morant, the Grizzlies have been the worst team in the NBA. So far, the 2023-24 season has been a disaster for them.

Could acquiring Robinson help them turn it around? 

Why The Memphis Grizzlies Do The Deal 

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NBA Analysis Network

Well, this isn’t about surviving Morant’s absence. It’s about his return. The Grizzlies know that Morant will be back. They might as well plan around that fact. This team may have the worst record in the NBA, but they know that they’re better than they’ve appeared in 2023-24 so far. 

With that in mind, Robinson would be a perfect addition. After all, Morant may be coming back, but Adams will not be. That’s fine – Robinson would be an upgrade.

He’s one of the best rim protectors in basketball. By pairing him with Jaren Jackson Jr. the Grizzlies should be able to establish an impenetrable defense. 

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Mitchell Robinson, New York Knicks, Memphis Grizzlies Updates

On the offensive end, this acquisition makes sense as well. Robinson will compliment Morant nicely in pick-and-roll sets. If the Grizzlies want to get competitive as soon as Morant returns, they should at least look at Robinson.

Should the Knicks part with him? 

Why The New York Knicks Do The Deal 

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NBA Analysis Network

A drop coverage rim protector may work alongside a free safety. Next to a defensive liability; their impact may be limited. The Knicks are seeing that in real time this season. Robinson is struggling to save the team’s defense alongside Julius Randle. 

Is the solution to trade Randle? Arguably. With that said, Robinson has publicly expressed discontent with his role on the Knicks. This partnership may be shortlived anyway. If Robinson wants out of town, the Knicks should move him before they lose him for nothing. 

This would be a lot more than nothing. More than anything, the Knicks are happy to land an unprotected first here. They’re also landing some cap relief from Adams’ expiring deal.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Mitchell Robinson, New York Knicks, Memphis Grizzlies Updates

Throw in an intriguing young player in LaRavia, and this may be enough for the Knicks to move off of their rim protector – whether he’s a dying breed or not. 

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