It is a little wonder Memphis prevented the bottom two spots in our ranks.
Despite having lottery talent, this team could become uncomfortably close to the luxury tax next season–the past on Chandler Parsons’ onerous deal. What’s worse, this group has an outgoing first-rounder hanging on its head. While the pick owed to the Boston Celtics has top-eight security this season and top-six coverage the next, it’ll be redeemed in 2021 in case it has not already conveyed.
Who’s to say the Grizzlies will not be terrible in 2020-21?
But Memphis has uncovered a franchise anchor in 19-year-old Jaren Jackson Jr., who is almost solely responsible for this particular standing. The toughest task in rebuilding is incorporating celebrities, but the Grizzlies already appear to have found one. Jackson’s per-36-minute averages comprise 19.0 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.9 cubes, 1.2 triples and 1.2 steals; that is unprecedented creation for an NBA freshman.
It might help if Jackson had more high-ceiling talent around him, but possibly Memphis could make a route to some this offseason. After sending out Marc Gasol, the Grizzlies could cut the cable on the grit-and-grind age for great with a trade of Mike Conley, whose title bounced around plenty near the trade deadline.
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