Roundtable: Questions surrounding the Grizzlies offseason


May 27, 2013; Memphis, TN, USA; Memphis Grizzlies point guard Keyon Dooling (right) brings the ball up court against San Antonio Spurs point guard Cory Joseph in the first half of game four of the Western Conference finals of the 2013 NBA Playoffs at FedEx Forum. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports


Should the Grizzlies re-sign Lionel Hollins?

Andrew Millen: I don’t think so. Lionel did a great job of getting the Grizzlies to their current position, but now that he has developed the squad, I don’t think he’s capable of using it effectively — almost like Ash with Charizard. Hollins certainly proved he could outduel the likes of Vinny del Negro and Scott Brooks, but he also proved he is not in Gregg Popovich’s league. I would like to see Dave Joerger in as head coach, but I would want to pair him with an offensive-minded lead assistant. Joerger is just as defensive-minded as Hollins, but if he can be more flexible with his rotations and less reactionary with his subs, he might be a much better fit.

Chuck Livingston: Depending on his demands and how highly other teams value Lionel, I could live with either scenario. Lionel is a good head coach, but he’s already clashed with the new management team and that seems like it would hang over everything. There’s been talk that the front office really likes Dave Joerger and some even wonder if he has more to do with the Grizzlies’ resurgence than Hollins. The only way to find out for sure is to give the job to Joerger and see what happens. The biggest fear for me would be letting Hollins walk and replacing him with someone that isn’t as good.

Joseph Nicks: It would have been a lot easier to jump at a yes if I hadn’t witnessed Pop outsmart him four straight games in the WCF. Couple that with the fact the front office seems to be making it pretty clear he’s not a priority, and you start to remember that sometimes good things don’t always make for a good fit.

Hal Brown:I think so, I think he’s a smart guy who knows this team really well and who knows the X-and-O’s of smart basketball better than almost any other coach in the league, minus Rivers and Popovich.  On the other hand, I know that at the very least Andrew has talked about his weird, stifling pride and the unwillingness to deal with analytics.  So, I dunno, maybe the Grizz don’t want to overpay him and find another guy, but I think being too stingy on resigning Hollins could really hurt the team.  People underestimate how much of this team is Hollins.

May 25, 2013; Memphis, TN, USA; Memphis Grizzlies head coach Lionel Hollins catches a loose ball in game three of the Western Conference finals of the 2013 NBA Playoffs against the San Antonio Spurs at FedEx Forum. San Antonio defeated Memphis 104-93. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Yeung: I would love to see Lionel Hollins resigned. He understands this team’s identity and led an extremely cohesive unit deep into the playoffs. Gregg Popovich stole the show in the Western Conference Finals, but that shouldn’t cloud the Grizzlies’ decision. Pop can make practically any coach look silly, and there are few options better than Hollins available for Memphis.


What is the most important issue the Grizzlies must address this offseason?

AM: Obviously, outside shooting is still an issue, but since the others will likely mention that, I think the most important issue might be bringing Tony Allen back. Tony wants to retire a Grizzly, but that will be difficult if he gets attractive offers from teams wanting his defensive talent and cultural leadership. The ownership proved with Rudy Gay that they were not willing to overpay to keep the status quo — now they need to prove that they are willing to pony up to keep the Grizzlies’ spiritual father where he belongs.

CL:  SHOOTING!! If the Grizzlies were able to acquire two good three-point shooters, that would be a good thing.

JN: Shooting. Hands down. Spreading the floor was an issue all season and it ultimately cost the Grizz any real shot at the Finals. Well, that and the fact Tony Parker is really, really good.

HB: The Three-Point shooting,  my god, the 3-pointer.  The Grizz were only 17th in offensive efficiency this season, which is bad, but not as bad as I thought it’d be.  The weird thing is: they were 7th for a period post-Rudy Gay-trade.  This isn’t because Gay hurt the team (though, well, he did in some ways) but because the Grizz found their offensive identity with him gone.  The problem is, the lack of three-point shooting keeps them from being a really elite offense: they just can’t space the floor. It’s a real problem. Three Pointers allow Marc and Z-Bo and even Tayshaun or Tony Allen (on cuts) the ability to work down low without being molested.  The Grizz just didn’t have that luxury this season.

KY:The most important issue for Memphis will be three-point shooting. Pondexter is the only dedicated catch-and-shoot specialist the Grizz have, and it’s not enough for a team that relies on its big men the way Memphis does with Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph. Gasol and Randolph need space to work their two-man game, and they won’t get that space if the opposing defense isn’t respecting their shooters.

May 3, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Hawks small forward Kyle Korver (26) attempts a three over Indiana Pacers small forward Paul George (24) in the first half of game six of the first round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs at Philips Arena. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports


What players should the Grizzlies target in free agency?

AM: Kyle Korver and J.J. Reddick have long been on the Grizzlies’ radar. Either one would help address the team’s shooting woes, but Korver would be cheaper. I think the Grizz also need to fill out their forward rotation — on days when Randolph isn’t at his peak, we need a better alternative than Darrell Arthur, or we will have to relive the San Antonio series. Jon Leuer could be useful if developed well, and Ed Davis is way more valuable than his minutes indicate. The Grizz could theoretically get back Dante Cunningham from the T-wolves, which would make a lot of people happy (including me). J.J. Hickson and Louis Amundson, both free agents this summer, are also interesting.

CL: At least one, if not two, knockdown jump shooters. They don’t have to be anyone flashy, but someone that’s reliable and can open the middle up for Conley, Randolph and Gasol.

JN: Literally anyone that can shoot. Seriously though. So Korver or that guy from Duke would be nice.

HB: Three-Point shooters, for the reasons above. Reddick, Korver, even OJ again, if necessary.  The purer the shooter and simpler their game, the better.

KY: I’d like to see the Grizz go after at least one more wing who can spot up from three, particularly if QPon replaces Tayshaun Prince in the starting lineup. Kevin Martin, Kyle Korver, and Marco Belinelli all strike me as potential targets for Memphis.