On Monday night, the Memphis Grizzlies‘ most successful season in franchise history came to a close.
This year’s playoff run marked the Grizzlies’ sixth ever appearance in the NBA Playoffs and the the team’s third consecutive trip under head coach Lionel Hollins. It ended in the Western Conference Finals and although Memphis was swept, they were simply beat by a better basketball team. The crowd in Memphis gave them a standing ovation following the final buzzer, a testament to the year that this group had.
Hollins’ career with the Grizzlies has been up and down and after finally getting a full time opportunity prior to the 2009-10 season, Memphis has seemingly not looked back. From a sub .500 record in his first year to the Western Conference Finals here in year number four — his success speaks for itself.
With that has come added attention and now, Hollins might just be the team’s most important free agent moving forward.
A number of teams, including the Los Angeles Clippers and Brooklyn Nets, among others will be interested in speaking with Hollins, so this should be a no-brain decision for the Grizzlies. Improvement should be the most important thing to a franchise that has only made the playoffs six times. Three of those have come over the last three years, so why would the Grizzlies hesitate to lock up a coach that has obviously taken them to the greenest of pastures?
The off-season and free agency might be all about the players, but sometimes it’s wise to stretch the focus to the bench.
Memphis needs to re-up Hollins’ contract and they need to do it quick.
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