Mayo heads to Memphis, Love to Minnesota in blockbuster trade

Updated: June 27, 2008, 10:52 AM ET
By Chad Ford |

The Minnesota Timberwolves did not hold onto O.J. Mayo for long.

The Wolves have reached an agreement in principle with the Memphis Grizzlies that sends the draft rights to Mayo, Marko Jaric, Antoine Walker and Greg Buckner to the Grizzlies in return for the draft rights to Kevin Love, Mike Miller, Brian Cardinal and Jason Collins.

The blockbuster deal for both teams wasn't completed until past 2 a.m. ET, some two hours after Boston made the 60th and final pick of the draft, according to The Associated Press. reported on Tuesday that Wolves GM Kevin McHale was infatuated with Love, but felt that the team had to select Mayo and use him to acquire more assets. Love, a fundamentally-sound post player, should mesh well with the Timberwolves' budding star Al Jefferson.

Notable Draft-Day Trades
Involving Two Top-Five Picks

2006: Portland acquires the draft rights to No. 2 pick LaMarcus Aldridge and a future second-round pick from Chicago for Viktor Khryapa and the draft rights to No. 4 pick Tyrus Thomas.

1998: Golden State acquires draft rights to No. 4 pick Antawn Jamison for draft rights to No. 5 pick Vince Carter.

1996: Milwaukee trades draft rights to No. 4 pick Stephon Marbury to Minnesota for draft rights to No. 5 pick Ray Allen and a future first-round pick.

1993: Orlando trades draft rights to No. 1 pick Chris Webber to Golden State for draft rights to No. 3 pick Anfernee Hardaway and three future first-round picks.

-- ESPN Research

In addition to landing Love, the Wolves get a sharpshooting swingman in Miller who can help carry the scoring load from the perimeter. The deal is also a financial boon for the Timberwolves, who get the bad contract of Jaric (three years, $21 million) off the books. Walker's and Buckner's contracts are not guaranteed after this season.

Timberwolves fans will likely be reminded of another lottery-swapping move two years ago, when Minnesota selected Brandon Roy, then traded him to Portland for Randy Foye and cash.

Roy went on to become rookie of the year in 2006-07 and an All-Star last season, while Foye has struggled with injuries while showing promise as a floor leader and playmaking perimeter threat.

The Grizzlies get the superstar they wanted in the backcourt in Mayo. They also rid themselves of Cardinal's bad contract (two years, $13 million). The Grizzlies now have a glut of guards on the team with Mayo, Mike Conley, Kyle Lowry and Javaris Crittenton.

Chad Ford covers the NBA for ESPN Insider. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

Chad Ford

Senior Writer, NBA Insider