The Memphis Grizzlies continue to dig deep into the talent pool as they take their time in finding the best candidate to be their next head coach.
The 2019 NBA Draft is just 26 days away, yet the Memphis Grizzlies are still operating without a head coach in place. This is not a terrible thing, though, as it is means they are doing their due diligience in finding the best match for the position.
Over the past week, the Grizzlies added two more head coach candidates to the mix — totaling six after Adrian Griffin slid into the latest rumors. On Friday, a seventh name came to the forefront via a report from ESPN‘s Adrian Wojnarowski. This was a little more than 24 hours after Beale Street Bears touched on the possibility of Memphis entering discussions with the Milwaukee Bucks’ Taylor Jenkins.
The majority of the seven names in the running for the Memphis Grizzlies’ head coach position have a direction connection with the NBA’s Developmental League, albeit in an assistant or head coach role if not both. It is clear that the Grizzlies want their next head coach have a track record of success stories within the topic of player development, and Taylor Jenkins has done just that. In fact, he is still doing that, now only on the big stage with the Bucks.
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While Jenkins has gained most of his fame from being on the Atlanta Hawks’ coaching staff for the bulk of this current decade, fans of the Memphis Grizzlies should be happy to hear that a lot of his D-League player development assignments took place with the San Antonio Spurs’ minor league club. The Spurs known for constantly cranking out young, polished players that were off the map, and Taylor Jenkins had a hand in those San Antonio successes at one point in time.
Currently still in-season with the Milwaukee Bucks, Taylor Jenkins has experience coaching a “unicorn” player of sorts in Giannis Antetokounmpo. This is important to note because the Memphis Grizzlies are as high on Jaren Jackson Jr. as the Bucks initially were with Giannis upon the Greek Freak’s entrance into the league in 2013. Imagine if Jenkins could continue to develop and mold Jackson Jr. into a prototype very similar to Antetokounmpo. That would put Memphis in the NBA spotlight with a potential NBA MVP leading the squad. If it can happen to Milwaukee, it can happen for Memphis, too.
On the flip side, Taylor Jenkins finds himself sitting neck-and-neck with the other six candidates the Memphis Grizzlies are currently considering. He does not have any NBA head coaching experience, which is a major common trend inside the field the Grizzlies have compiled thus far. Memphis’ approach is to take a risk and hopefully pluck the next great coach in the NBA. This tactic has not treated the franchise well in the past, but they are hoping for a different and better result in 2019.
Right when it looks like the Memphis Grizzlies could make a final decision on a new head coach, a new candidate is placed into the fold. While Taylor Jenkins and the Milwaukee Bucks are on the brink of elimination from the NBA Playoffs, Memphis could drag this contest along for a little longer. That is exactly what will happen if they are seriously eyeing anyone additional from the coaching staffs of the Golden State Warriors or Toronto Raptors.