May 1, 2014; Memphis, TN, USA; Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol (33) and guard Courtney Lee (5) on the bench against the Oklahoma City Thunder in game six of the first round of the 2014 NBA Playoffs at FedExForum. Mandatory Credit: Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports

Grizzlies only have one nationally televised game--what gives?

Grizzlies slighted on national TV appearances

The Memphis Grizzlies will only have one nationally televised game this upcoming year.  Is that completely ridiculous?  Absolutely.  A team that’s projected to finish high up in the Western Conference should not only be on national TV one time out of their 82 game season.

Here’s how many games each team gets this year:

Atlanta Hawks: 2
Boston Celtics: 1
Brooklyn Nets: 4
Charlotte Hornets: 2
Chicago Bulls: 25
Cleveland Cavaliers: 25
Dallas Mavericks: 11
Denver Nuggets: 5
Detroit Pistons: 2
Golden State Warriors: 19
Houston Rockets: 17
Indiana Pacers: 5
Los Angeles Clippers: 23
Los Angeles Lakers: 20
Memphis Grizzlies: 1
Miami Heat: 16
Milwaukee Bucks: 0
Minnesota Timberwolves: 2
New Orleans Pelicans: 2
New York Knicks: 16
Oklahoma City Thunder: 25
Orlando Magic: 0
Philadelphia 76ers: 0
Phoenix Suns: 10
Portland Trail Blazers: 16
Sacramento Kings: 3
San Antonio Spurs: 19
Toronto Raptors: 4
Utah Jazz: 1
Washington Wizards: 10

via RealGM

It’s understandable that teams with less star power and smaller markets wouldn’t get as much airtime, but this is a little absurd.  The Grizzlies are a very, very solid team, and they play great basketball.  They in no way deserve only one nationally televised game.

Does market size have an effect on this situation?  Definitely.  The terribly weak Lakers will be on 20 times.  Yup, 20.  A team that will more than likely finish below .500 is going to be on national television 20 times.  It’s all about market size.

And it makes sense, but it’s still a major slight to put a very strong team only on national TV one time.  Hell, even the Timberwolves get two (presumably for a Kevin Love rematch).

Hopefully the Grizzlies will use this as fuel to prove people wrong.  They are almost always considered the underdog, or the “tough out” in the playoffs, but this team is more than that.  Grit n’ Grind doesn’t care about being nationally televised, they’re just going to get the job done.

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