Rudy Gay feels Grizzlies new owner didn’t give him enough of a chance
When the Memphis Grizzlies were bought by Robert Pera this past off-season, and their front office was re-shaped, the Grizzlies new goal was to clear salary and get below the luxury threshold. Rudy Gay became public enemy number one, being that he was owed an astounding $53.7 million over three seasons.
To be fair, Memphis was also linked to possible Zach Randolph trades, but nothing ever materialized with Z-Bo. At the end of the day, Rudy Gay was shipped to the Toronto Raptors in a three-team deal that sent Tayshaun Prince and Ed Davis to Memphis, Jose Calderon to the Detroit Pistons and a few other minor pieces swapped. , saying that the Grizzlies’ new ownership failed to give him a fair shot at seeing if he were worth the big-time money.
Via Marc Spears, Yahoo! Sports:
“You have to give me a chance to see if I’m worth that,” Gay said.
“With [new management], I don’t think anybody’s comfortable,” Gay said. “They’re rookie owners. They come in there and they want it their own way, and you can’t blame them for that. But it’s a player’s league.”
I understand the way Gay feels, but the fact remains that Rudy was paid like a superstar player, and has failed to ever live up to those expectations. Rudy Gay averaged about 18 point per game, on a lousy 40% from the field this season. His shooting percentage alone should have been enough to warrant a deal for Gay, rather than Zach Randolph. Another deciding factor would have to have been the fact that the Grizzlies made their historic playoff run as the 8 seed in 2011, sans Rudy Gay.
The Grizzlies have won 10 of 11 games, and seem to have made the right decision. They achieved their goal of getting under the luxury tax, and are still playing great ball. Rudy Gay seems to be satisfied with this trade, despite his claims that he wasn’t given his a fair shot under new ownership. Gay even agreed that he needed a change of scenery.
“I needed a change,” Gay said of the trade. “I needed a new situation. A new task. I needed a new task with something I could grasp, something I could take over. I need to be challenged. I was challenged in Memphis, but it was tug of war at times. Here I’m being challenged and they’re seeing what I’m made of.”