NOVEMBER 2: Following their fifth game of the season on Wednesday, the Grizzlies have moved Morant to the suspended list and officially signed Biyombo, the team confirmed in a press release (Twitter link).
Biyombo received a one-year, $5MM contract with a $1MM guarantee, sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).
Memphis will be able to transfer Ja Morant to the suspended list after he serves five games of his 25-game suspension, and Charania suggests the signing will occur once that happens. The Grizzlies are off to an 0-3 start with upcoming games Monday against Dallas and Wednesday at Utah.
The 31-year-old Biyombo will provide an interior presence for a team playing without starting center Steven Adams, who will undergo knee surgery and miss the entire season. The Grizzlies are also missing backup center Brandon Clarke, who is still recovering from a torn Achilles he suffered in March, and have been starting Xavier Tillman in the middle.
Biyombo is a free agent after spending the past two years in Phoenix. He got into 61 games last season, making 14 starts and averaging 4.3 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 14.3 minutes per night. He shot 57.8% from the field, but he brings a limited shooting range and hasn’t made a three-pointer in his career.
The Grizzlies have a full roster, so they can’t add Biyombo without cutting someone else until Morant is officially on the suspended list. They still have their entire $12.4MM non-taxpayer mid-level exception remaining, plus the $4.516MM bi-annual exception, if they want to offer Biyombo more than the veteran’s minimum salary, though it seems unlikely that will be necessary.