By Tyler Mills
The Memphis Grizzlies are a team that appears to be on the rise. It certainly makes sense that the Memphis Grizzlies were finally able to put together a sustainably competitive roster due to the fact that they were able to draft players like Rudy Gay, Mike Conley and O.J. Mayo.
Zach Randolph may truly be the glue that holds the system together for the Memphis Grizzlies. Zach Randolph and Rudy Gay have finally been able to be on the floor together and things have certainly worked well when Randolph has been coming off the bench for the Grizzlies. Rudy Gay is someone who can make a lot of progress by staying aggressive in the passing lane and making sure that the entire team feeds off a more aggressive performance.
People knew that with this roster that Memphis could do well. Lionel Hollins has been the head coach that has been able to make sure that Mike Conley and Rudy Gay for example are not only effective on the fast break, but also when it comes to the half court offensive sets that the team runs. I don’t think any objective basketball observer can not say that Marc Gasol is not turning into a truly dominant big man in the NBA. Some people may not be able to say that Marc Gasol is better that Pau Gasol yet, but it very well may be getting to that point.
The different injuries and issues that the Grizzlies have faced in the past may very well why the team took the time to sign a former top scorer like Gilbert Arenas to potentially fill in some of the scoring gaps that may arise. Gilbert Arenas has to be happy to not be sitting on the couch with people questioning whether or not his career and instead being in the middle of the playoff race with the Grizzlies.
The question of how good a guy like Darrell Arthur is what will end up making the difference whether or not the Memphis Grizzlies will be able to make it to the Western Conference Finals is not a question that we will be able to answer Darrell Arthur was injured early in the year and he was not able to play this year.
The Western Conference Finals are where most people predicted the Memphis Grizzlies to end up before this strike shortened NBA season began. The same prognosticators generally had the Memphis Grizzlies losing to the Oklahoma City Thunder in those Western Conference Finals. A big guy like Darrell Arthur could have been the key against a guy like Tim Duncan of the San Antonio Spurs and if a guy like Arthur plays like many analysts thought he would when he first came out of the University of Kansas. The Grizzlies do appear to be on the rise and seem to be ready to take that next step this season despite the fact that Arthur is injured this year.
Tyler Mills is a former college student looking for a positive way to inform people and make some money to pay living expenses. He also covers sports and Iowa news for the De Moines Free Press.