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kriD
03-04-2007, 09:47 AM
Billups, Griz could fit

All-Star guard won't count Memphis out

By Ronald Tillery
March 4, 2007

The Grizzlies are keeping a watchful eye on their future even in defeat, and Saturday night's 92-89 loss to the Detroit Pistons could have provided an unsuspecting glimpse.

Pistons All-Star guard Chauncey Billups acknowledged he would consider Memphis as a free-agent destination in the offseason. Billups is expected to exercise a player option on a contract paying $6.9 million next season.

He'll likely enter the summer as the top-rated player available. And the Grizzlies are positioned as serious shoppers for the first time.

Memphis is expected to have at least $10 million in salary cap room , and has already decided to target a big-time point guard.

Billups fits the bill with his offensive prowess and defensive ability, and interest.

"I would be lying if I said with 20-something games left until the playoffs that I wasn't thinking about my future," Billups said. "When the time comes, I've got to consider all of my options. I know this is one team with a lot of money that's looking to get a point guard. I'm going to have to consider this option when the time comes. But right now, my focus is trying to win a championship with my team."

Billups led the Pistons with 19 points, nine assists and five rebounds Saturday night. The Griz would have a major backcourt upgrade should they lure the 6-3 Billups.

Point guard will be their biggest area of need given that backup Chucky Atkins will likely leave in free agency and starter Damon Stoudamire could be bought out of his final two years. That would leave only rookie Kyle Lowry at the position.

Billups' size and shooting would make him a solid investment given that his skills haven't diminished with age. He'll turn 31 just before training camp. Steve Nash was 30 when he signed with the Phoenix Suns as a free agent in July 2004.

The Grizzlies' need coupled with Pau Gasol as a cornerstone sounded appealing to Billups.

"You can't guard him with one guy," Billups said of Gasol. "He's a problem. He's long. He shoots the jumper. He attacks the basket. He can pass. There's nothing that he can't do. He's a premier player."

Billups was hardly turned off by the Grizzlies' dismal record.

"They have a lot of good young talent," Billups said. "They're a couple of players away from being really, really good. The season started out really rough for them and then Gasol came back, and they've been playing well. They're a lot better than their record."

SladeRider
03-04-2007, 12:18 PM
This could be interesting, if Memphis can get a top 2 pick and pick up Oden in the draft, a line up of Billups, Miller, Gay, Gasol & Oden is quite devestating.

They would have an inside game and two good wide men and an awesome point guard.

This would also make the Southwest division even harder, like it isn't hard enough already with the Mavs, Spurs, Rockets and Hornets (who aren't a bad team either).

Folterkammer
03-04-2007, 12:40 PM
as long as they miss these " 5:08 Gay 3pt Shot: Missed" i am not worried ;)

Tokey41
03-04-2007, 10:28 PM
That would be a pretty bad ass lineup... why the hell do they need to be in our division!?

jayC
03-04-2007, 11:10 PM
If Memphis wins the lottery and adds Billups they could be really scary.

They coudl have their pick of Durant or Oden.

Dtownsfinest
03-05-2007, 10:18 AM
Damn. Gasol, Billups and Durant or Oden? That's if Gasol stays. Would he still be demanding a trade with additions of a lottery pick and Billups?

mqywaaah
03-05-2007, 10:25 AM
That is pretty scary. But we can deal with it...

Flacolaco
03-05-2007, 10:29 AM
"They're a couple of players away from being really, really good

no kidding...It's the NBA....isn't this true of most teams?

Dtownsfinest
03-05-2007, 10:37 AM
When you think about it we say this about everytime he acquires a player(Denver) and they rarely work out. I said the same thing about the Hornets last offseason with the acquistions of Chandler, Peja and a more experienced Paul. So no i'm not really worried about them but they definately will have a nice core of guys to atleast make a run in the playoffs or attempt to anyway.