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Feb 27, 2013

Memphis on My Mind

  • Grizzlies Mavs Preview – another big game tonight. Welcome back Mayo!
  • POWER RANKINGS – Courtesy of 3sob.com

    Oh goodness, did I have a great a time in Brooklyn this weekend? The Nets didn't really, and Grizzlies fans were holding their breath. But the final result was another grindout. Another tally to the winstreak we got going again. It's time to start really pushing for the second season. Things are really coming together. When they need a bucket, someone gets one. When they need a stop, they get it.

    This was a weird game on Sunday against Brooklyn. Joe Johnson was out and they start CJ Miles. What happened to Marshon Brooks? He came off the bench in 2nd half and torched us. Although looking at the boxscore I guess he didn't convert as many buckets as I thought. I am biased since he is a recent product from Providence, RI - and I catch some of their games here in Rhode Island. It was pretty cool though - I met another big basketball fan who does broadcasting of some sort for the Providence Friars, who shared the bus ride home with me. I raised the question about the BIG EAST basketball.

    Last night you might have seen the Memphis Tigers on ESPN2. To be honest, it was my first time seeing them this season. I must have jinxed them because they lost to lowly Xavier, who I watched also last week play twice against none other than University of Rhode Island and VCU. The commentators mentioned how University Memphis is among the quickest and most athletic in the country. I thought, "then how the heck can they be losing this bad to an awful team that barely beat URI which is the bottom of their conference?" (Xavier / URI was really close until the final minutes when Xavier pulled away to a wide margin, but it was much closer than Memphis was in the first half!!)

    The answer of course... GRIT GRIND. They couldn't grind it out. Grind is not just "struggling" to survive. Grind is hard work. Grind is also concentration, teamwork, and commitment. It's making free throws. It's helping on defense. It's making the right pass, taking it to the hole, or pulling up at just the right time. It seems simple but I think they put a tremendous amount of practice into it collectively. See: Gasol: Skilled in all ways of contending. The Grizzlies are marked across the league as being the big bruisers and a physical presence. They trade away the most athletic freak on the team, Rudy Gay. But I think just as important to their game is mental and calculating. It's the real difference between Win and Loss.

    Go Grizz!
  • Feb 18, 2013

    Only in Memphis

    This is the "We Don't Bluff City", home of the GRINDFATHER, TA09. The MACBO50 is lethal deadly weapon; probably want to get your hands on one before they ban them. I just finally got my SLAM magazine framed and hung in the Grizzlies shrine:

    It's not serious; it's very serious.

    If you missed the Allstar game. Then you missed nothing. Except ZBO was there. And Kyrie Irving. That kid! Terrance Ross was good. Faried good. Allstars?

    I have to start with a prediction. Grizzlies will lose the Raptors by 5 points Wednesday night and everyone will freak out. Then they will win big in Orlando Friday. And follow that performance with a 2 point win in Brooklyn on Sunday.

    It is essential that all bears remain hungry for the duration of the season!

    TIP-IN:

  • Custom Grizzlies Designs - check out my man's site here for some rad Grizz gear.
    Go Grizz!
  • Feb 13, 2013

    Addition by Subtraction?

  • Grizzlies and Prince – Keeping the Faith
  • Rudy Gay Does it Again – Hitting game-winners in a Raptors uniform
  • Celtics on 7-game roll - even without Rondo – Paul Pierce has helped lead the C's despite the loss of their allstar point guard

    Let me say it plainly, this is the optimist talking, with the recent moves these teams are improved by reduction in payroll and staff. As Coach Lionell Hollins called it, the beer budget is actually working so far. Contradictorily, you swap out the Lamborghini for a BMW and it's better short-term, even though primary motivation is long-term health.

    In the month of February the Grizzlies have gone 4-2, losing their one road game in ATL. The Celtics have gone 5-1, with the loss coming the night after the 3OT thriller, and best game of the season so far. The Raptors have also gone 4-2 in February with impressive wins over 3 bonafide playoff teams.

    For the Grizzlies you have a lot of things going. An entire book could be written to compare Rudy Gay versus Tayshaun Prince on this team, and going forward. For now the results speak for themselves. The team is winning more than losing, which translates to playoffs instead of draft lottery. They call the Speights/Ellington/Selby trade a trade that brought back Leuer and a guy named Tony Wroten, Jr. He had more minutes in the Dleague than on our squad. Now he's getting regular minutes.

    Jerryd Bayless has stepped up into the O.J. Mayo role more than the Greivis Vasquez role, which I think is a better utilization of his talent. Darrell Arthur is now essential. Obviously the team is fully dependent on the production of the big men in the front court now. When Gasol and ZBO go off, no team will beat us. The sky is the limit.


    Unbelievably, the Celtics went on a huge win streak immediately following the loss of Rajon Rondo. Paul Pierce has taken over as the point guard and gets close to a triple double every night. Courtney Lee, Avery Bradley, and Jason Terry have all stepped up in the back court. Jeff Green is simply having a coming out party since Rondo went down. You wonder if somehow he was intimidated by Rondo, but really it's just an opportunity to step up that all of them have embraced.


    The Raptors are in a different boat. Before the trade they were a cellar dweller. Now they have some life in them. I wouldn't call them a playoff team yet, but their recent wins have been very impressive. They are in the conversation with Rudy Gay. At this point you may ask, how are they "addition by subtraction"? Well, in this case they mortgage some of their future and let go of a guy that spent his entire career there since 2005. That was a loss of Jose Calderon and Ed Davis. Calderon was obsolete already since they plucked Kyle Lowry from Houston over the summer, but Lowry's been hurt a lot this season. Ed Davis is one of those big University of North Carolina products. He has been around 3 years, and saw his numbers increase about 50% this year. Just when he was ready for prime time, off he goes to Memphis. The real beneficiaries on the Raptors from this trade are Derozen, Terrence Ross, and Alan Anderson. They are the real gunners of this team now paired with Lowry and Rudy Gay, they are free to shoot. Finally this team isn't built around Bargnani and random journeymen…

    FIRST

    SECOND

    Go Grizz!
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