Posted by Matt Moore
The Memphis Grizzlies return to the playoffs this weekend for the first time since 2006. It's the first moment of genuine excitement for the team and city since the rebuilding process began after the trade of Pau Gasol. But something does come after the playoffs and the Grizzlies have a great number of things to work out with regards to their future roster. Chief among those concerns is Zach Randolph who needs a new contract. But it would appear the Grizzlies are trying to settle that concern before the playoffs even begin. The Memphis Commercial-Appeal reports today that Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley strolled on into FedEx Forum with Randolph as Randolph's representatives worked out an extension with management.
When asked if that was a sure sign that his contract extension was all but a done deal, Randolph smiled and said: "They're saying its close."via Griz deal with Z-Bo could be done today - The Memphis Edge.
Raymond Brothers is Randolph's agent and he's been locked in nonstop negotiations with Griz general manager Chris Wallace for the past week. After poking around a little bit today, I'm told that the issues left on the table are so minor that a deal could be finalized and announced as soon as today.
The key will be not just how much they give Randolph, but how many years. Randolph turns 30 this summer and while his game doesn't rely on athleticism so it's likely he may sustain production longer than a leaper, there's still going to be a dip. The team needs to structure a contract that rewards the work Randolph has put in both on and off the floor for Memphis, but also allows for their future growth. Too strong of an offer and they'll limit themselves. But apparently they have a set already agreed to. Getting it done before the playoffs is either a brilliant tactical move and good karma, or counting chickens before they hatch.