Memphis Grizzlies 2013-2014 preview

(photo by Deena Dietrich)
(photo by Deena Dietrich)

(photo by Deena Dietrich)

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.

For all your Memphis Grizzlies news, follow Deena Dietrich on Twitter @DeenasDays

Grizzlies Roster

2013-14 Roster
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
7 Jerryd Bayless G 6-3 200 08/20/1988 Arizona/USA 5
12 Nick Calathes G-F 6-6 213 02/07/1989 Florida/USA R
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
24 Tony Gaffney F 6-8 205 11/14/1984 Massachusetts/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
30 Jon Leuer F 6-10 228 05/14/1989 Wisconsin/USA 2
13 Mike Miller G-F 6-8 218 02/19/1980 Florida/USA 13
20 Quincy Pondexter G-F 6-6 225 03/10/1988 Washington/USA 3
21 Tayshaun Prince F 6-9 215 02/28/1980 Kentucky/USA 11
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
David Joerger (College – Moorhead State)

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