One of the long-term goals of the NBA is for every NBA team to have single affiliation with a D-League team. This means that there will eventually be 30 D-League teams (at least, that is the plan). The Memphis Grizzlies helped make progress towards that goal by entering into single-affiliation with the Iowa Energy earlier this month. This is great news for the organization because they can now more closely monitor their players down in the D-League and also know that the coaches will be exclusively working with Grizzlies players who need development and not players from other teams as well. This kind of single-affiliation will create more camaraderie in the organization as a whole because the D-League team they are sending their players to is fully invested in the Grizzlies and not partly invested in some other team.
The best players on the Iowa Energy will be guys in the Grizzlies’ organization which means that it’ll be Grizzlies players getting the bulk of the minutes in all Iowa Energy D-League games. It’ll be Grizzlies players who will get to have coaches strategize game plans around them, etc. In addition, if another player is doing really well on the Iowa Energy who deserves a shot in the NBA, the Grizzlies will get first dibs on calling that player up. I know that on the surface, this doesn’t seem like much of a deal, but in reality, having single affiliation with the Energy will be a great resource for the organization to use in the coming seasons.
—Ben Parker: follow me on twitter @nba_lord