Grizzlies, Clippers Swap Stephenson, Jeff Green

Jayne Kamin-Oncea / USA TODAY Sports Images

Jayne Kamin-Oncea / USA TODAY Sports Images

8:48pm: The Clippers traded Lance Stephenson and their lottery-protected 2019 first-round pick to the Grizzlies for Jeff Green, the teams announced. The pick is also lottery-protected for 2020 if it doesn’t convey in 2019, and if it doesn’t change hands in 2020, it would become a 2022 second-rounder, as the Clippers confirmed on their website.

Stephenson, 25, has largely disappointed this season and is averaging only 4.7 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.4 rebounds per game, the second straight season of declines for a once-promising up-and-comer. Memphis is his third team since he left the Pacers to sign with the Hornets in the summer of 2014, though Grizzlies players reportedly told management they want him to stay.

The Clippers appeared to quickly turn away from Stephenson after acquiring him from Charlotte this past summer, though coach/executive Doc Rivers vehemently denied a report that the team gauged interest in him as early as November. Stephenson was reportedly part of a proposal involving Channing Frye that the Clippers ultimately backed away from. The mercurial guard is making $9MM this year with a team option for $9.405MM next season.

In acquiring Green, who is on an expiring contract, the Clippers have a decent placeholder until Blake Griffin returns from his broken hand. Green has a $9.45MM salary for this season, so Memphis gets to create a tiny $450K trade exception for the difference between his salary and Stephenson’s. Conversely, the Clippers add an extra $787,500 to their projected tax bill.

Green was averaging 12.2 points and 4.5 rebounds, and that scoring average is the second-lowest of his career. The former fifth overall pick didn’t become the solution on the wing that the Grizzlies surely hoped he’d be when they traded with Boston to acquire him last year. The latest deal involving Green reunites him with Rivers, his former Celtics coach.

This would seem like a balanced exchange if not for the pick headed to the Grizzlies. However, the Clippers are obliged to send another lottery protected first-round pick to the Raptors because of a previous trade, and the earliest the Grizzlies can see the pick the Clippers owe them is two years after the Clips convey the pick they owe the Raptors, as Chris Herrington of The Commercial Appeal explains. Toronto could get its Clippers pick as late as 2019, a scenario that would mean the Grizzlies only get a second-rounder.

Will Joseph contributed to this post. Dan Woike of The Orange County Register broke the news that Stephenson had been traded to the Grizzlies, while Zach Lowe of ESPN.com had Green going to the Clippers. Marc Stein of ESPN.com reported the involvement of the first-round pick, while USA Today’s Sam Amick reported it was lottery protected (Twitter link) and TNT’s David Aldridge pegged it as a 2019 first-rounder (Twitter link).

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13 Comments on "Grizzlies, Clippers Swap Stephenson, Jeff Green"

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sam sam
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sam sam
7 months 8 days ago

wow that’s just stupid green was playing some great ball and they is lance

formerlyz
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formerlyz
7 months 8 days ago

It kind of seemed like Memphis gave in after Gasol went down…..

sam sam
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sam sam
7 months 8 days ago

right im surprised they didn’t get more in return at least a second round pick or something clippers got a nice bench piece with green

formerlyz
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formerlyz
7 months 8 days ago

They got a 1st rounder, and Green is a free agent after the season….

MoneyMike733
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MoneyMike733
7 months 8 days ago

The Grizzlies get a lottery-protected future first-round pick, too, USA Today’s Sam Amick and ESPN’s Marc Stein add (Twitter links).

sam sam
Member
sam sam
7 months 8 days ago

oh thanks I didn’t see that

formerlyz
Member
formerlyz
7 months 8 days ago
This is a surprisingly good deal for the Clippers, at least for now. It gives them some added versatility. Someone that can play the 3, as well as the 4, and knock down some shots, as they have good spacing, which should help Jeff Green shooting the 3. That being said, defensively it’s still an issue Memphis obviously gets the 2019 1st rounder for a guy that was about to be a free agent. Looks like they’re giving up on the rest of the season. Not much space on the floor. Also, now they have PJ Hairston, Lance Stephenson, and… Read more »
bdpecore
Member
bdpecore
7 months 8 days ago

It’s more likely they made the move to gain a future first while getting a serviceable replacement for Lee.

Guest
Member
Guest
7 months 8 days ago

Aside from acquiring the first round pick, this doesn’t do much for Memphis. Lance basically takes Courtney Lee’s place in Memphis, but I just don’t see the fit. Clippers get a really good player in Jeff Green, who can start or come off the bench for them, but is a free agent after this year.

starlord
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starlord
7 months 8 days ago

1st round pick Grizzles ain’t doing nothing anyway, get a pick hope for a star player in draft.

Starship Pegasus
Member
Starship Pegasus
7 months 8 days ago

Doc Rivers lol. Just keep throwing away assets for guys who won’t help win. I needed a good laugh today

Arthur Hill
Admin
7 months 8 days ago

Who knows if Doc plans to be there in 2019? He may be gambling with the Clippers’ future, but not his own.

steve
Member
steve
7 months 8 days ago

On face value its a decent deal for both teams. Green was going to be an FA and Grizzlies managed to get back more then they gave up to acquire him. Clippers get a combo forward to help them with Griffin out.

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