Memphis Grizzlies: 5 takeaways from the first week of preseason

Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images
Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images /
1 of 6
Memphis Grizzlies
Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images /

The Memphis Grizzlies are just under half way through their preseason action. We’ve compiled everything you need to know about what’s happened to date.

The Memphis Grizzlies are two games into their five-game preseason schedule, and will spend the weekend resting before hosting the Atlanta Hawks on Oct. 9.

The off time should be a welcome opportunity for recuperation, and a chance for the players, coaches, executives, and fans to make some early determinations about the team’s chances in the upcoming year. Two games is a small enough sample size to render most conclusions meaningless, but every little bit of data counts.

That’s why we’ve outlined five key takeaways from the Grizzlies’ first two preseason clashes — a 92-84 victory over the Orlando Magic, and a 110-89 drubbing of the Philadelphia 76ers. That Memphis won both affairs is of little importance, though certainly a more favorable outcome than lopsided losses.

The Grizzlies have yet to play with Marc Gasol on the floor, and only utilized Mike Conley in the first of their two games. They’re clearly not playing at optimal levels, which makes the victories they secured all the more suspect, and highlights the importance of exploring a bit of context before we dive into what we saw.

The Magic and Sixers are likely to be lottery teams in the upcoming year. The talent level the Grizzlies faced was not sufficient to make any calculations of how Memphis might fair playing against the NBA’s elite. Mario Chalmers, for example, looked like an All-Star with Orlando’s backup point guards, D.J. Augustin and Shelvin Mack, covering him. That might not hold against more talented bench players (i.e. Shaun Livingston in Golden State).

It will be important to keep that in mind as when considering each of these findings. They’re not ironclad truths, stress tested in the crucible of the playoffs. They’re not trends. They’re not even really the beginnings of patterns. But they are interesting, so let’s dive in.