Is Gay really an asset, though?
The Grizzlies want to trade Gay for good reason. He's one of the most overpaid players in the league.
For 16.5 million per year, Gay is not playing extremely well and, worse, is not really improving. The analytics mostly agree on this... theNBAgeek actually rates him as below average for his career: he produces about 0.08 wins per 48 minutes while the average SF produces about 0.1
His player efficiency rating is generally in the 17 range, while an average player rates a 15. Salary-wise, a player with a 17 PER is worth about 10-12 million per year, which would make Gay overpaid by about 50%.
We like to overlook PER when we are talking about excellent defensive players, but Gay is not one. Last year, the Grizzlies gave up 6 fewer points per possession when they swapped him out for guys like Quincy Pondexter and Donte Cunningham.
His adjusted plus minus is also extremely ordinary. The Grizzlies are a solid team, but they have generally been less than one point better when Gay is on the floor. This year, he's actually a zero. A player in his tax bracket ought to have an adjusted plus minus in the 3-10 point range. Paul Pierce, with the terrible time he's having this year, is still a +2 for us.
Gay is coming into his prime, and yet all of the metrics I mention here are trending DOWN, not up. Gay's performance has been in slow decline since 2010-11.