Only time will tell if the Memphis Grizzlies — who advanced further in the playoffs this past year than any other season in franchise history — made the right decision to let Lionel Hollins walk away.
In turn, the Grizzlies kept things in-house, hiring former assistant coach Dave Joerger to replace Hollins. As Joerger faces immediate pressure to win and put Memphis back into playoff contention within the Western Conference, he’s looking to develop a plan that will allow his bench to be productive more and more as the season rolls along.
In a recent report issued by the Commercial Appeal, Joerger says he’s hoping that three players in particular can continue to develop and eventually play pivotal roles for the Grizzlies late next season. Those in mention included Ed Davis, Kosta Kufos and Quincy Pondexter. Joerger believes that by playing his starters less during the regular season and allowing other to develop confidence, the team will be more well-rounded come playoff time.
Well, on paper, it’s a good plan. Why? Well, depth in the Western Conference will be crucial. There’s so much talent among the teams that are considered to be playoff contenders and Memphis needs to keep pace with them. We know the team will find its peak through the likes of Marc Gasol, Zach Randolph and Mike Conley, but X-factors like the three aforementioned players could certainly be key.
I guess we will have to wait and see if Joerger’s approach will pay dividends, but it’s certainly not a bad philosophy if the team can buy in to it.