I am still holding out hope that the Grizzlies can provide the best deal for the Suns to get Amare. If the Grizzlies are not making the deal because of the players that they would have to give up, that is totally insane. You can find a Mike Conley or Hakim Warrick anywhere. In the landscape of the NBA they are totally ordinary. Don't tell me about increased production. If you get minutes in the league, you get production.
By my count, there are 101 players in the NBA that avg. 30 or more minutes per game. Quick trivia-- How many of those don't avg. double-digits in scoring?
The answer............. 3. 3 freaking players-- Jason Kidd, Mike Miller, and Shane Battier (2 former Grizzlies). Anybody in the NBA that gets minutes will produce, some much more than others. And they really can produce if they are on bad teams.
Rudy Gay, who I like, is a guy that might make an All-Star team once. He is a great talent that does not have the moxie to be a truly great player. Think Rashard Lewis.
So, I know that I can find Warrick and Conley anywhere (hell, Chalmers and Sessions are both second round picks and they have shown much more promise as future PG's), and Rudy is the big piece I lose? Where do I sign?
The Grizzlies do have a "core." His name is O.J. Mayo. The team needs to be built with how it will compliment this tremendous talent. You trade for Amare, put him at the 4. Now you have a perimeter star and a post star. In a few years you have two of the top 10-15 players in the league, and you pair them with guys that will play a role. Every great team has role guys. You can have talented players and no role guys (like the Clippers have), and you can have a terrible team. Conley is not the best fit to compliment Mayo at the point, and Rudy is not the best to compliment Mayo at the 3 spot. Your 3 spot is going to be a grinder that can guard multiple positions and hit a corner three. You have your 5 guy in Gasol, he can play that role. Now for my PG I have to find a bigger guard that can stretch the floor to put alongside OJ. This is easy.
The hardest thing to attain in the NBA is a real star. Role guys are the easiest thing to get. The Grizzlies have a golden opportunity to get a star, and if they pass up this chance it will be another horrific decision. These chances don't come around that often. Amare Stoudemire is a machine that nobody (including Duncan in the playoffs) can stop when he is really motivated, and puts up 21 and 9 when he isn't playing his best. The Grizzlies would be total idiots to not do everything, including getting rid of pieces of the crappy "core" that will never go anywhere together, to get Stoudemire.
Bow with me as we pray.