The Heat are acquiring Andre Iguodala, Jae Crowder, and Solomon Hill from the Grizzlies in exchange for Justise Winslow, Dion Waiters, and James Johnson, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. The trade was first reported Wednesday night, and the Thunder were briefly mentioned as a third team dangling Danilo Gallinari. For now, Miami gets depth on the wing while Memphis takes on two less-than-ideal contracts in addition to the 23-year-old Winslow. Let’s grade the deal for each side.
Not in conjunction with any other move, this isn’t a clear home run for Pat Riley. Iguodala hasn’t played all season, and he started to show some signs of age during last season’s playoffs. What he can realistically offer this team is a little unclear. Crowder is another solid defensive wing, but he has shot only 29.3% from three this season. For a team with a struggling defense, being able to flank Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo with Iguodala and Crowder should help stifle some opponents in big moments. Spacing could be tight, though Hill—depending on how much he actually plays—could help offset those concerns (as well as other players already on the roster.) Being able to shift Adebayo to center more often is probably the biggest boon of this trade for the Heat. Iguodala and Crowder can credibly guard modern-day fours while also helping against perimeter stars. With this move, Miami’s lineup flexibility increases considerably.
Is all that worth giving up on Winslow for? Iguodala will be with Miami for at least next season, but Crowder and Hill are on expiring deals. Winslow is 23 years old, and still has untapped potential, he’s just been injured. The Heat obviously want to capitalize on what’s in front of them, but it will be difficult to tell if giving up on Winslow was worth it until Iguodala actually plays in an NBA game again.
Memphis traded someone who wasn’t even on the team for a 23-year-old with room to improve, and two capable veterans who can provide minutes on the fringe of the rotation as the team is handed over to the young guys. Taking on the contracts of Johnson and Waiters isn’t really an issue for the Grizz. This summer’s free agency class is mediocre, and Memphis isn’t a huge player in that market anyway. The prize of this deal is Winslow. When healthy, he can initiate offense and guard all five positions, the latter at an elite level. I still think Winslow can be a highly effective player in this league, and now he gets to join a team that’s on the same timeline as him, with young, emerging stars in Ja Morant and Jaren Jackson Jr., as well as Dillon Brooks and Brandon Clarke. I think Winslow will thrive in this new opportunity in Memphis. At the very least, he’s undoubtedly worth what the Grizzlies gave up.