Brandon Clarke and the Memphis Grizzlies agreed on a contract extension that will secure the forward’s services for the next four years.
In an effort to secure the services of their young, talented core, the Memphis Grizzlies recently rewarded 26-year-old Brandon Clarke with a four-year, $52 million contract extension. First reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Grizzlies wanted to extend Clarke’s contract before Monday’s deadline for rookie scale extensions for players selected in the 2019 NBA Draft. Clarke becomes the fourth player in the Grizzlies’ young core to receive a lucrative contract extension, with John Konchar and stars Ja Morant and Jaren Jackson Jr. receiving theirs in the past couple of years.
Clarke, the 21st overall pick in his draft class, has become an integral part of Memphis’ recent playoff runs. After missing out on the postseason fun for three consecutive years, the Grizzlies finally ended the drought when they entered the 2021 NBA playoffs as the eighth seed in the Western Conference. They lost to the Utah Jazz in the first round but that experience, along with the continuous development of their young core, fueled them the following year.
The Grizzlies then produced a 56-26 regular season record during the 2021-22 season, but unfortunately lost to the eventual champions Golden State Warriors in the second round of the playoffs. Clarke played a huge role in their success last year, averaging 10.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks on just 19.5 minutes of play. While it’s true that Clarke’s numbers don’t stand out, it’s his versatility on the frontcourt that allows Memphis to adapt to certain matchups. He is only measured at 6-foot-8, but Clarke’s athleticism and mobility help him match up with bigger players or quicker wings.
With Jackson Jr. sitting out the start of the regular season, we might see Brandon Clarke starting for the Grizzlies when they open their campaign against the New York Knicks on October 19.