This team could either be surprisingly good, or predictably bad.
Losing Tony Allen, Vince Carter, and Zach Randolph was big for the “Grit-n-Grind” culture that Memphis has been know for. The was known for their stingy defense and their ability to beat you up in the paint with their physical play style. This will be a big year for Mike Conley and Marc Gasol.
Conley is one of the most underrated players of all the NBA. He is a great defender and a quality scorer. His ability to get the most out of his team continues to shine year after year. Conley will need to elevate his game, primarily on the defensive side of the ball, if the Grizzlies want to make it far this year. Young players like Wade Baldwin IV and Dillion Brooks will have opportunities throughout the season to win that sixth man spot and take some pressure off Conley.
When discussing the best centers in the NBA, Marc Gasol’s name always comes up. His game has evolved over the years from a tough and polished low post scorer to a legitimate deep threat at his position. Gasol’s touch with the ball in his hands always makes him a threat wherever he is on the floor. Along with Conley, Gasol’s play will have to career Memphis to the post season. Teams like Denver, Minnesota, and New Orleans all have pieces that can challenge the Grizzlies for a precious playoff spot.
Lets be real here, Chandler Parsons has one foot in and one foot out of the NBA. Yes, he is a quality player when he is on the court, but he’s barley BEEN on the court to produce anything. Year after year, Parsons goes down with a season ending injury and given how much money Memphis paid him, that’s unacceptable. It’s understandable the difficulties of dodging injuries, but the Grizzlies need Parsons to be at 100 percent if they play on making it past the regular season.
There are some serious question marks with this team. Only time will tell to see how good (or bad) they will be.