The Memphis Grizzlies are a team of stats, and they are in the process of becoming a team of the score. The team has been announced as such, and they will be led by their new head coach. They are a young team, but they have the talent to make it work. They are in the process of being announced as a team, and they will be led by their new head coach.
Today, we take a look at the Memphis Grizzlies overview and how they are performing.
Memphis Grizzlies History
Memphis Grizzlies, an American professional basketball team based in Memphis, Tennessee, plays in the Western Conference of the NBA.
The Grizzlies played their first game in 1995 and were originally based in Vancouver as one of the two Canadian expansion franchises (alongside the Toronto Raptors) to join the NBA that year.
They were immediately one of the worst teams in the league, winning no more than 19 games in each of their first four seasons and finishing at the bottom of their divisional standings in five of the six years they spent in Vancouver.
This prolonged futility took its toll on the Grizzlies’ attendance numbers and profitability, and the team’s ownership moved the franchise to Memphis in 2001 in a bid to increase revenue.
In the newly relocated team’s first draft, it added Spanish forward Pau Gasol, who would go on to become the Grizzlies’ first all-star player. The team hired basketball icon Jerry West to serve as general manager in 2002.
West quickly turned the team’s fortunes around, and in 2003–04 Memphis won 50 games (a 22-win improvement from the previous season) to earn the first playoff berth in franchise history. The Grizzlies lost in their opening postseason series that year and experienced the same fate in both 2004–05 and 2005–06.
Memphis’s successful run was short-lived, and the team fell to a last-place finish in 2006–07. West left the Grizzlies in 2007, and Gasol was traded in 2008 as the team began a rebuilding effort.
Memphis returned to the postseason in 2010–11 behind the play of forwards Zach Randolph and Rudy Gay, and the team proceeded to upset the top-seeded San Antonio Spurs in six games to record its first playoff series victory.
In 2012–13 Randolph, Marc Gasol (Pau’s brother), and a young, defensive-minded squad advanced to the conference finals for the first time in team history, where the Grizzlies lost to the Spurs.
Memphis continued to qualify for the playoffs in the following years, but the aging roster produced diminishing returns, the team being swept by the Spurs in the 2015–16 playoffs after having posted a 42–40 record in the regular season and putting an NBA record 28 players on the floor over the course of the year because of rampant injuries.
During the 2017–18 season the team was beset by injuries to most of its key players and limped to a division-worst 22–60 record.
Notable Player: Jerry West
Jerry West, in full Jerome Alan West, byname Mr. Clutch, (born May 28, 1938, Cheylan, West Virginia, U.S.), American basketball player, coach, and general manager who spent four noteworthy decades with the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA).
A frail youth, West overcame his early physical shortcomings by putting in long hours practicing his shot and developing the quick release that would become his signature. He grew dramatically during the summer before his senior year and then led his high school to a state championship, drawing the attention of colleges nationwide.
As a sharpshooting 6-foot 3-inch (1.91-meter) guard for West Virginia University West became the school’s all-time leading scorer and rebounder, and he was twice named an All-American (1959, 1960).
West was drafted by the Lakers with the second overall pick of the 1960 NBA draft. The reserved West was initially thought by some to be an ill fit for Los Angeles, but he readily acclimated to the L.A. media spotlight and proved to be one of the most popular figures in franchise history. (His early, derisive nickname “Zeke from Cabin Creek”—which he despised—was not even an accurate reference to his proper hometown of Cheylan but rather referred to a nearby unincorporated area.)
He compiled a career scoring average of 27.0 points per game, failing to average more than 20 points per game in just his rookie season, and he was named an All-Star in each of his 14 seasons in the league.
As spectacular as his individual achievements were, his Lakers teams did not reach a similar level of success in an era dominated by the Boston Celtics: West led his team to nine berths in the NBA finals, but the Lakers won just one championship (1972).
In addition to his professional and collegiate accomplishments, West was a member of the U.S. men’s basketball team that won the gold medal at the Rome 1960 Olympic Games.
After his retirement in 1974, he served as the Lakers’ head coach for three seasons (1976–79), guiding them to 145 wins and 101 losses over that span. West then spent three years as a scout for the Lakers before becoming the team’s general manager in 1982.
He shaped squads that won five NBA titles between 1982 and 2000, his final year with the franchise. West worked in the front office of the Memphis Grizzlies from 2002 to 2007, assembling the first playoff teams for the young franchise. His front-office acumen led to two NBA Executive of the Year awards (1995, 2004).
In 2011 he became an adviser to the Golden State Warriors, as well as a member of the team’s executive board. The Warriors revolutionized basketball during West’s time as an adviser, winning two NBA titles (2015, 2017) and setting a new standard for offensive efficiency.
Shortly after Golden State won its second title with West in the front office, he left the franchise to become a consultant with the Los Angeles Clippers.
West was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1980 and in 1996 was named one of the greatest players in NBA history. In 2019 he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
The greatest testament to his enduring impact on the sport of basketball is perhaps the fact that a photo of West served as the model for the ubiquitous red, white, and blue NBA logo.
Current Grizzlies Roster Status
The Memphis Grizzlies weren’t very active in the offseason, as they enter the 2020-21 campaign with pretty much the same squad as a year ago. Guys like Josh Jackson and Anthony Tolliver parted ways with the Grizzlies in free agency, but all in all, Memphis was able to keep their core intact.
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that the Grizzlies’ success this season will lie heavily on one man: Ja Morant. After a breakout rookie campaign, the 21-year-old is expected to take his game one notch higher in his sophomore year, with the hopes of an entire city placed on his broad, able shoulders.
The same can be said about third-year big man Jaren Jackson Jr., who will also play a key role in how the Grizzlies fare not only this season but for years to come. The 2018 fourth-overall pick entered the new season dealing with a knee injury, which forced him to miss a handful of games. The injury does not appear to be overly serious, and it is not expected to have any lasting effects.
Along with Morant and Jackson, Dillon Brooks, Kyle Anderson, and Jonas Valanciunas come in to fill out Memphis’ starting five.
De’Anthony Melton, who signed a four-year, $34.6 million extension in the offseason, will be one of this team’s most important players on the second unit. Guys like Brandon Clarke, Tyus Jones, Grayson Allen, and even rookie guard Desmond Bane will likewise play their respective roles on the Grizzlies’ bench.
|BRANDON CLARKE||F-G||25||$2,726,880||6′ 7″||213 lbs||SAN JOSE STATE|
|DAKOTA MATHIAS||G||27||$106,352||6′ 3″||198 lbs||PURDUE|
|DANNY GREEN||G||35||$10,000,000||6′ 5″||213 lbs||UNC|
|DAVID RODDY||G-F||21||N/A||6′ 5″||253 lbs||COLORADO STATE|
|DESMOND BANE||G||24||$2,033,160||6′ 4″||213 lbs||TCU|
|DILLON BROOKS||G-F||26||$12,200,000||6′ 6″||224 lbs||OREGON|
|JA MORANT||G||23||$9,603,360||6′ 2″||171 lbs||MURRAY STATE|
|JARENJACKSON||F-C||22||$9,180,560||6′ 10″||240 lbs||MICHIGAN STATE|
|JOHN KONCHAR||G||26||$2,200,000||6′ 4″||209 lbs||PURDUE-FORT WAYNE|
|KENNEDY CHANDLER||G||19||N/A||5′ 11″||169 lbs||TENNESSEE|
|KILLIAN TILLIE||F-C||24||$2,000,000||6′ 8″||218 lbs||GONZAGA|
|SANTI ALDAMA||F-C||21||$1,994,520||6′ 10″||222 lbs||LOYOLA (MD)|
|STEVEN ADAMS||C||29||$17,073,171||6′ 10″||264 lbs||PITT|
|TYUS JONES||G||26||$7,600,000||5′ 11″||194 lbs||DUKE|
|VINCE WILLIAMS||F||21||N/A||6′ 5″||202 lbs||VCU|
|XAVIER TILLMAN||F||23||$1,517,981||6′ 7″||244 lbs||MICHIGAN STATE|
|ZIAIRE WILLIAMS||F||20||$4,373,160||6′ 7″||213 lbs||STANFORD
Memphis Grizzlies Team Analysis
Memphis was not exactly the best team in the NBA during the 2019-20 season in terms of their offensive game. Their overall offensive rating of 108.7 ranked just 21st in the NBA. They were not bottom-dwellers, but nevertheless, they were in the bottom half of the league.
In terms of scoring, the Grizzlies averaged 112.6 points per game last season, which was pretty much middle-of-the-road at 14th in the NBA. Four out of their five starters averaged double-digits in scoring with Ja Morant (17.8 points per game) leading the way for Memphis. Brandon Clarke was their main offensive weapon on the second unit, with the big man putting up 12.1 points per game off the bench.
Their efficiency from the floor is actually something that the Grizzlies can be proud of. In 90.9 total field goal attempts (fifth), Memphis shot an efficient 46.8 percent from the floor, which was eighth in the entire league. This team attempted the fourth-most shots from within three-point territory, with 59.4 total two-point attempts per contest. They also shot efficiently, making 53.2 percent of their attempts (seventh).
A clear area of improvement for the Grizzlies would be in their three-point shooting. They attempted just 31.5 triples per game last season which ranked 24th in the NBA. They did not shoot well from distance either, going 34.7 percent from beyond the arc. The fact that Memphis Grizzlies best players, Morant, averaged just 0.9 triples per game on a 33.5-percent clip certainly had a lot to do with this particular weakness in Memphis’ offense. Needless to say, this is an area the Grizzlies want to work on for 2020-21.
Memphis wasn’t very good in terms of getting to the line last season. They averaged just 21.8 free-throw attempts per contest last term (24th), making 76.3 percent of their freebies (19th).
The Grizzlies were very impressive when it came to moving the ball around, though, as their 26.9 assists per game ranked second in the league. Conversely, they averaged 15.2 turnovers per contest (23rd).
The Grizzlies fared much better on the defensive end last season compared to how they had their woes on offense. During the 2019-20 campaign, Memphis garnered an overall defensive rating of 109.7, which was 14th in the NBA.
Although, preventing their opponents from scoring is something that the Grizzlies will want to work on in 2020-21, as they allowed opposing teams 113.7 points per game last term (21st). Opponents shot a total of 90.3 field-goal attempts against Memphis last season (22nd), making 45.0 percent of their shots (ninth).
The Grizzlies allowed their opponents to 35.3 three-point attempts per game (25th) on a 36.5-percent shooting clip (24th). In terms of shots within the arc, Grizzlies opponents attempted 55.0 two-pointers per game (15th), making just 50.4 percent of them (sixth).
Keeping away from foul trouble is another area the Grizzlies will want to work on in 2020-21, as they committed an average of 21.2 personal fouls per game last term (18th). This resulted in 25.0 free-throw attempts for opponents, memphis grizzlies rank is lowly 25th in the NBA.
Rebounding was actually an area the Grizzlies excelled in the last term. They averaged 46.5 boards per game, which was sixth in the entire league. 36.2 of those came on the defensive end (fifth). It was Valenciunas that led the charge for the team in this department, grabbing 11.3 boards per game. It is worth noting, however, that the Grizzlies also allowed 10.4 offensive rebounds per game for their opponents, which ranked 20th in the league.
Memphis Grizzlies average points per game is 7.9 steals (12th) as well as 5.5 blocks per game (fifth). Jaren Jackson was their best shot-blocker last term, averaging 1.6 swats per contest, while Jonas Valenciunas blocked 1.1 attempts per game. Memphis forced 14.8 turnovers per game (12th).
The Grizzlies are coached by 36-year-old Taylor Jenkins, who is currently in his second season as the team’s headman. Last season, in his first year as a head coach, Jenkins logged a 34-39 record. Under Jenkins’ tutelage, Memphis barely missed out on a postseason berth, losing out to the Portland Trail Blazers in the play-in game for the eighth seed in the West. Jenkins won the Coach of the Month award once (in January) last season.
Prior to being named as the Grizzlies’ head coach, Jenkins served as an assistant coach for two other teams in the NBA. He was an assistant to Mike Budenholzer for five seasons. When Budenholzer made a move to the Milwaukee Bucks in 2018, he brought Jenkins with him. Jenkins served another season under coach Bud in Milwaukee before taking on the head coaching job in Memphis.
With the Grizzlies, Jenkins has a number of assistants working under him: Blake Ahearn, Brad Jones, Darko Rajakovic, David McClure, James Penn, Sonia Raman, and Vitaly Potapenko.
Memphis Grizzlies Player Stats 2021-22
|Ja Morant PG||57||57||33.1||27.4||1.4||4.4||5.7||6.7||1.2||0.4||3.4||1.5||2||24.53|
|Dillon Brooks SF||32||31||27.7||18.4||0.9||2.3||3.2||2.8||1.1||0.3||1.6||3.3||1.8||15.55|
|Desmond Bane SG||76||76||29.8||18.2||0.6||3.8||4.4||2.7||1.2||0.4||1.5||2.6||1.9||17.62|
|Jaren Jackson Jr. PF||78||78||27.3||16.3||1.5||4.3||5.8||1.1||0.9||2.3||1.7||3.5||0.7||17.09|
|De’Anthony Melton SG||73||15||22.7||10.8||0.9||3.6||4.5||2.7||1.4||0.5||1.5||1.8||1.7||15.23|
|Brandon Clarke PF||64||1||19.5||10.4||2.1||3.2||5.3||1.3||0.6||1.1||0.5||1.9||2.5||23.75|
|Tyus Jones PG||73||23||21.2||8.7||0.2||2.2||2.4||4.4||0.9||0.6||0.4||7||16.55|
|Ziaire Williams SG||62||31||21.7||8.1||0.4||1.7||2.1||1||0.6||0.2||0.7||1.8||1.6||9.7|
|Kyle Anderson SF||69||11||21.5||7.6||1||4.3||5.3||2.7||1.1||0.7||1||1.6||2.6||14.49|
|Steven Adams C||76||75||26.3||6.9||4.6||5.4||10||3.4||0.9||0.8||1.5||2||2.2||17.6|
|John Konchar SG||72||7||17.9||4.8||1.2||3.4||4.6||1.5||0.6||0.3||0.4||1.3||3.8||13.98|
|Xavier Tillman C||53||2||13.2||4.8||1.2||1.8||3||1.2||0.9||0.3||0.6||1.2||1.8||15.18|
|Sam Merrill SG||6||9.7||4.2||0.2||1||1.2||0.7||0.3||0.5||2||7.52|
|Santi Aldama PF||32||11.3||4.1||1||1.7||2.7||0.7||0.2||0.3||0.5||1.1||1.3||10.26|
|Jarrett Culver G||37||9.1||3.5||0.4||0.9||1.3||0.9||0.5||0.1||0.5||1.1||1.7||8.72|
|Killian Tillie SF||36||3||12.8||3.3||0.6||1.1||1.7||0.6||0.6||0.4||0.4||1.6||1.7||7.64|
|Yves Pons SG||12||5.9||1.1||0.4||0.6||1||0.1||0.1||0.3||0.1||0.5||1||5.91|
|Dakota Mathias G||6||2.7||1||0.3||0.3||0.2||0.2||0.2||INF||11.04|
|Shaq Buchanan F||2||5||1||0.5||0.5||1||1||0.5||1||0.5||1||0.62|
|Tyrell Terry PG||2||1.5||1||0.5||20.07|
|DaQuan Jeffries SG||3||3||0.7||0.7||0.7||0.3||0.3||INF||8.38|
|Xavier Sneed F *||2||4||0.5||0.5||1||1||-7.05|
|Jon Teske C||3||2.7||0.7||0.7||0.3||0.3||0.3||INF||1.5|
2021-22 Record Splits
|Last 10 Games||5||5||50|
|Last 10 Home Games||4||2||66.7|
|Last 10 Road Games||2||4||33.3|
|vs. Teams Over .500||5||5||50|
|vs. Teams Below .500||1||1||50|
|Within Ten Points||2||3||40|
|Within Three Points||1||3||25|
|vs. Division Teams|
|vs. Conference Teams||6||6||50|
|vs. Atlantic Teams|
|vs. Central Teams|
|vs. Pacific Teams||2||4||33.3|
|vs. Northwest Teams||4||2||66.7|
|vs. Southwest Teams|
|vs. Southeast Teams|
Who Did The Grizzlies Recently Sign?
The Grizzlies needed some backcourt depth, and they decided to look in the direction of veteran point guard Tim Frazier. The 6-foot guard has been around the league for quite a bit, as he’s had previous stints with six other NBA teams.
Frazier signed with the Grizzlies on a 10-day deal, and he was only able to play in three games for Memphis. During this brief spell, he averaged just 1.3 points, 1.3 rebounds, and 2.3 assists in 11.0 minutes per contest.
Who Are The Grizzlies Targeting In Free Agency?
The Grizzlies were not very active in the offseason in terms of adding players via free agency. The only guys they signed over the offseason break (aside from the two rookies they scooped up in the 2020 NBA Draft in Desmond Bane and Xavier Tillman) were Killian Tillie and Sean McDermott, who both penned two-way deals with the squad. Both Tillie and McDermott went undrafted last year and have since played minimal roles — at best — for the Grizzlies this season.
Over the offseason, Memphis was linked to a number of free agents available in the market, including Marcus Morris Sr., Davis Bertans, Danilo Gallinari, and Jerami Grant.
Who Did The Grizzlies Most Recently Trade For?
The Grizzlies took part in a three-team trade deal during the offseason, which also included the Portland Trail Blazers and the Boston Celtics. Memphis parted ways with a 2023 second-round pick and a 2025 second-round pick, sending both in the way of Boston.
The Grizzlies also paid cash to the Blazers as part of the deal. In exchange, Memphis acquired Mario Hezonja, who they waived prior to the start of the season. The Grizzlies also got Desmond Bane from the Celtics in the deal. Additionally, Enes Kanter made his way to Portland.
What Is The Best Grizzlies Roster Of All-Time?
During the 2012-13 season, the Grizzlies recorded a franchise record of 56 regular-season wins. They also went all the way to the Western Conference Finals that term — the farthest they’ve gone since being established as a team in 1995 — but were defeated by the mighty San Antonio Spurs in four games.
What Is The Grizzlies’ Salary Cap?
Despite the lack of star power in the team, the Grizzlies still entered the 2020-21 season as an over-the-cap squad. According to Spotrac, Memphis currently has a total cap of $131.3 million, which is $22.2 million over the league-mandated salary cap.
Gorgui Dieng was the Grizzlies’ top earner for 2020-21, with his $17.3 million salary taking up a huge chunk of the team’s total cap before he was waived in March of 2021. Jonas Valanciunas does not fall too far behind with $15 million. Justise Winslow ($13 million) and Dillon Brooks ($11.4 million) come in third and fourth, respectively, and are the only other players that will pocket eight-digit salaries this season.
Ja Morant is still in his rookie-scale deal and he is set to pocket $9.2 million this term. In terms of hierarchy in the payroll scale, De’Anthony Melton ($9.6 million) and Kyle Anderson ($9.5 million) will earn more than Morant in 2020-21.
The Memphis Grizzlies are a professional basketball team based in Memphis, TN. The Grizzlies had their start in the playoffs of the pre-season, where they were one game out of the conference crown but were ousted in the first round. In the postseason, the Grizzlies were another part of the conference, taking their first postseason victory in six years.
The Grizzlies continued to win games and put up good numbers, making it to the conference finals, where they were faced with a powerful Toronto Raptors team that had been in the game for years. The Grizzlies were able to play through their differences and achieve their first professional basketball victory in over a decade.