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Report: Rudy Gay trade talks heat up between Grizzles and Raptors

The Grizzlies are still exploring a trade of Rudy Gay and are engaging in active discussions with the Raptors and Celtics. (Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images) The Grizzlies are still exploring a trade of Rudy Gay and are engaging in active discussions with the Raptors and Celtics. (Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images)

The Memphis Grizzlies and Toronto Raptors are in "active trade discussions" about forward Rudy Gay, ESPN.com's Marc Stein reported Monday.

The Grizzlies are insisting that they no longer feel any overwhelming need to trade Gay after their trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers last week got them under the luxury-tax threshold. But the Raptors and Celtics, among other teams,  remain interested in swinging a deal before the trade deadline on Feb. 21.

From Stein's report:

But sources say that the Raptors, undaunted by that stance, continue to pursue Gay and also covet Grizzlies forward Darrell Arthur. Toronto, sources said, has made veteran point guard Jose Calderon and blossoming young forward Ed Davis available as the two cornerstones of its offer.

The Boston Celtics, sources say, are another team that has registered exploratory interest in Gay. But making a trade for Gay would require Boston to part with Paul Pierce -- a step that Celtics management may not be ready to take, especially since Gay has two years left on his contract valued at more than $35 million.

Stein reported that Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins prefers to play out the season without trading Gay now that the team is under the luxury-tax threshold. The Grizzlies currently sit fourth in the Western Conference. Under Hollins, the Grizzlies have made the playoffs two seasons in a row, falling in the first round last year. The Raptors are 5 1/2 games out of a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Statistically, the 26-year-old Gay is in the midst of his worst season since his rookie campaign in 2006-07. He is averaging 17 points and 5.9 rebounds per game on 40.4 percent shooting from the floor.

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