NBA Free Agency 2018: 5 offseason targets for the Memphis Grizzlies

MEMPHIS, TN - OCTOBER 18: Tyreke Evans
MEMPHIS, TN - OCTOBER 18: Tyreke Evans /
2 of 6
Tyreke Evans, trade deadline
NEW ORLEANS, LA – JANUARY 20: Tyreke Evans #12 of the Memphis Grizzlies stands on the court during the first half of a NBA game against the New Orleans Pelicans at the Smoothie King Center on January 20, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

5. Tyreke Evans

The team is currently over the cap by about $2 million, but one of the lone bright spots in Memphis last season was the mini-renaissance of Tyreke Evans. His 19.4 points per game, 5.2 assists and 5.1 rebounds weren’t quite the stuff of his 2009-10 Rookie of the Year campaign, but those numbers were his most productive season since the early promise he showed in Sacramento.

At 28, other teams will be courting his services and Evans will likely be courting the biggest payday his career has left to offer him. Given its cap situation, Memphis could offer him their mid-level exception, although this is not without risk. Before doing so, the team would really need to answer to what extent does Evans loom in the franchise’s future. If they want to re-sign him and do not want to use their exception, then they could offer him a contract that breaks down to about $8 million per year. If they did so, that would most likely be their only signing of note and the roster would largely resemble the list of names from last season’s opening day.

Were the results worthy of running it back with that same group? Maybe the injuries and coaching changes make such a question impossible to truly answer. But such a move would signal the front office believes the team wasn’t doomed talent wise, but simply unfortunate.