The Memphis Grizzlies are coming off their best season in franchise history winning 56 games culminating with their first trip to the Western Conference Finals. Last month, ESPN The Magazine named the Memphis Grizzlies “the best franchise in sports.” All the Grizzlies core players are returning from last season: Zach Randolph, March Gasol, Tony Allen, Mike Conley, Jerryd Bayless, Quincy Pondexter and Tayshaun Prince. Add to that draft pick Jamaal Franklin, free agent Mike Miller and trade acquisitions Nick Calathes and Kosta Koufos, and Memphis may have the most dominant roster ever.
The Grizzlies promoted Assistant Coach David Joerger to Head Coach after letting Lionel Hollins go. As Defensive Coordinator, Joerger led Memphis to become one of the league’s most feared defenses. The Grizzlies ranked second in overall defensive rating, leading the NBA in points allowed with 89.3 and causing more steals than any other NBA team with 2,105. Representing Memphis on the 2012-2013 NBA All-Defensive Teams were Tony Allen (First Team), Mike Conley (Second Team), and 2012-2013 NBA Defensive Player of the Year Marc Gasol (Second Team).
While their defense is strong, the Grizzlies’ offense needs a little help with their three-pointers. That is where the addition of Mike Miller from the Miami Heat comes into play. Memphis hopes Miller will increase its three-point percentage. Last season the Grizzlies ranked last in attempts per game with just 13.5 and made the fewest with only 4.7 per game. As back up big man, Kosta Koufos will provide some help in the paint and relief to Gasol. Rookie Jamaal Franklin will contribute his toughness to the grit and grind that the Grizzlies are known for.
Memphis lost its first preseason game last night 106-87 to the Chicago Bulls in St. Louis. The Grizzlies next preseason game is at home on Wednesday October 9 against the Dallas Mavericks. Memphis opens up the regular season on the road in San Antonio. This Western Conference Finals rematch against the Spurs will be on October 30.
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|Num||Player||Pos||Ht||Wt||DOB||Prior to NBA/Country||Yrs|
|9||Tony Allen||G-F||6-4||213||01/11/1982||Oklahoma State/USA||9|
|10||Andre Barrett||G||5-10||172||02/21/1982||Seton Hall/USA||4|
|11||Mike Conley||G||6-1||185||10/11/1987||Ohio State/USA||6|
|32||Ed Davis||F||6-10||225||06/05/1989||North Carolina/USA||3|
|34||Melvin Ely||C-F||6-10||261||05/02/1978||Fresno State/USA||8|
|22||Jamaal Franklin||G||6-5||191||07/21/1991||San Diego State/USA||R|
|33||Marc Gasol||C||7-1||265||01/29/1985||FC Barcelona/Spain||5|
|41||Kosta Koufos||C||7-0||265||02/24/1989||Ohio State/USA||5|
|50||Zach Randolph||F||6-9||260||07/16/1981||Michigan State/USA||12|
|3||Willie Reed||F-C||6-10||220||05/16/1990||St. Louis/USA||R|