Record: 43 – 39 (7th in the West)
Season Ended: Lost in the First Round to the Spurs (in 6 games)
Dillon Brooks (SF/PF)
Tyreke Evans (PG/SF), Mario Chalmers (PG), Ben McLemore (SG)
Tony Allen, Vince Carter, Zach Randolph
Projected Starters (Last year averages)
PG: Mike Conley (21 pts, 4 reb, 6 ast)
SG: Wayne Selden (5 pts, 1 reb, 1 ast)
SF: Chandler Parsons (6 pts, 3 reb, 2 ast)
PF: JaMychal Green (9 pts, 7 reb, 1 ast)
C: Marc Gasol (20 pts, 6 reb, 5 ast)
James Ennis (SF), Brandan Wright (PF/C), Tyreke Evans (PG/SF)
Major Story lines
ZBo and Tony Allen gone – After years of grinding and challenging the top teams in the West but never breaking through the Grizzlies are changing the identity of their team. While they seem committed to keeping Gasol and Conley, they decided to let Allen and Zach Randolph walk. In a kind gesture they have already announced plans to retire Tony Allen’s jersey. They’ll be dependent on Chandler Parson’s health and young/new guys stepping up to make up for the lost production.
Chandler Parsons’ Health – Briefly mentioned above, Chandler’s health will be the X factor for this team. I didn’t even factor his presence into the equation when I did my projections because I don’t know what he looks like on this roster yet. If he can stay remotely healthy he is obviously more than a 6 point per game scorer. If he maximizes his skills I think the Grizz can end up closer to Josh’s projection than mine.
Mike Predictions (35 – 47) (12th in the West)
- Grizzlies lack of firepower kills them – While I hated doing it because I love Gasol and Conley, I just can’t see this Grizzlies team competing in the currently stacked Western Conference. Their veteran leadership keeps them ahead of the young teams in the West but does not get them past the teams with reasons to compete now.
Josh Predictions (43-39) (9th in the West)
- Grizzlies miss the postseason – Losing your team’s top rebounder (Randolph) and top defensive stopper (Allen) is never a great sign for the immediate future. And call me crazy, but I don’t think Tyreke Evans and Mario Chalmers are going to be able to pick up the slack. Even with stars like Gasol and Conley, I think the west is just too strong for the Grizz this year and cause them to miss the postseason for the first time since 2009-2010.