With the season beginning, you may have a few questions about our new (read: same old) Grizzlies. Luckily, I'm here to arbitrarily make up your questions for you and answer them without providing supporting evidence.
- How long will Iavaroni last?
Remember on April 1 when I predicted that Iavaroni would be judged by the Grizzlies performance during the first 20 games of this season? Well, we finally get to see if I'm right. If the Grizzlies are better than expected (Imagine a 30 win pace.), then Iavaroni is safe. Given that this team doesn't look better than last year's team, I think Iavaroni may be spending Christmas in Arizona.
- What's with the point guard situation?
Mike Conley is the starter. There are four other players, Kyle Lowry, Javaris Crittendon, OJ Mayo, and Marko Jaric, who can also play point. The Grizzlies will likely trade Crittendon and Lowry for something insignificant. Conley will probably average 12 and 5, and next year, we'll continue to wonder if he's going to develop into Tony Parker.
- What's with the big man situation?
The first thing you should know about the big man situation is that Darko Milicic is terrible. Please do not tell me about his defense, his ability to block shot, or his 'potential'. He's seven feet tall and he can't even dunk. If I was seven feet tall, all I would do is dunk. Mililcic will never make meaningful contributions on a winning team so it is time to move on.
That means the Grizzlies have Hakim Warrick and two rookies in the post. I think you will find that the Grizzlies have difficulty rebounding and playing defense. The good news (yes, there is some good news) is that Darrell Arthur and Marc Gasol may develop into players that con contribute on a good team.
The Grizzlies still need an all star caliber big man to compete in the playoffs, and their current players won't develop into that.
- How good is OJ Mayo?
OJ Mayo, unlike Darko Milicic, has the potential to be good. He should be good enough to make the Rookie-Sophomore game, and he's got a good chance of making the All Rookie Team. Mayo would exceed expectations if he won rookie of the year as there is stiff competition, but he's not going to make the All Star team this year, and I imagine we'll be asking the same questions about his potential this time next year.
- Will anyone attend any games?
Yes! The Grizzlies might even sellout in Boston. In Memphis, the Grizzlies might set a record for lowest attendance in the modern era if such a record exists and 'modern era' is aritrarily defined.
As a result, there will continue to be questions about the viability of an NBA franchise in Memphis and whether owner Michael Heisley is going to sell the team to an owner that will move the team back to the Northwest.
Of course, the Grizzlies could be successful in Memphis. It remains to be seen whether they will be successful. If the goal is to test the franchise under the most dire circumstances to see if it can survive, then this season should be a success.