NBA Talking Points – Grizzlies Vs Celtics

Dean Riley - 22 Feb 2022

For the third season in a row, the Memphis Grizzlies have performed better than everybody expected.

In fact, Grizzlies fans are in essence living a best-case scenario right now. Not only was Ja Morant named an All-Star – he's also an MVP candidate. There's also Jaren Jackson Jr., who's likely to be nominated for the Defensive Player of the Year Award. And of course, Taylor Jenkins, who really should be on everyone's shortlist to be named NBA Coach of the Year. In short: the 2021-22 Memphis Grizzlies have it all.

With the team thriving right now, with a large part of that owing to the team taking full advantage of the void left by Jonas Valanciunas, everything they're enjoying right now is the result of wanting to improve.

And when they take on the Celtics at TD Garden on March 4, fans will hopefully catch a glimpse of the scope of everything they've managed to do right.

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Morant A Playmaker

Still, Memphis is far from perfect. Due for improvement yesterday are their half-court offense, foul shooting, and three point finding of the rim.

Memphis' defense struggled early on in the season but has improved by leaps and bounds since then. So much so, that they've gone from worst in the NBA to 7th in defense efficiency.

Another surprise has been Ja Morant. By now, it has become clear that the Memphis Grizzlies and the star scorer/defender are a perfect fit.

When compared to his rookie NBA season, he's a much bigger threat now from beyond the arc than ever before. What's more, he's been doing it in a much larger volume of at least 4.5 attempts per game. While Morant won't be classed in the same league as Steph Curry for shooting, or Jrue Holiday for defending any time soon, he's shown himself more than capable of bringing his own brand of magic to the hardwood floor.

From Maybe To Favourites

Right now, bookies have the Grizzlies placed at +1100 to win the Western Conference and make it into the Finals.

This stands to reason, since nobody has done nearly as well as Memphis, except for the Phoenix Suns.

The Grizzlies have built their current roster from the ground up, and this focus on playing the “long game” certainly seems to be paying off in more ways than one.

With three years of overachieving behind them, the Grizzlies appear to be on the fast-track to yet another incredible season finish.

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