3 biggest gifts from the Memphis Grizzlies so far in 2021

Ja Morant, Memphis Grizzlies (Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports)
Ja Morant, Memphis Grizzlies (Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Memphis Grizzlies
Jaren Jackson Jr., Memphis Grizzlies Mandatory Credit: Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports /

The Memphis Grizzlies‘ 2021 season has been about what was expected if you peek at their win-loss record. The Grizz are standing at 19-14, but the way they have reached that point is far from typical. Here’s an example.

Without Ja Morant, the Grizzlies’ record on the year is 9-12. Without him, they’re 10-2.

That said, we’ve received a handful of surprises and “gifts” from the Memphis Grizzlies in 2021. To be honest, I know it’s a stretch, but I’m trying to get into the Christmas spirit here. Here are the three biggest gifts that the Grizzlies have given fans in 2021.

Gift No. 1: The best stretch of basketball in a half-decade, from the Memphis Grizzlies

There are a lot of words to describe this team but consistent is not one of them. That said, this team gave us one of the best stretches of basketball in franchise history.

The Grizzlies’ 11-game stretch that saw them take just a single loss is the best since the 2014-15 season, where Memphis started the year at 10-1. The difference here is that the 2014-15 season didn’t see the Grizz break an NBA record for scoring margin (I’ll get to that later).

The Grizzlies were, without a doubt, the best team in the NBA during that stretch of time.

The issue moving forward is consistency — with Morant back, Memphis has taken two consecutive losses in each of his first two games back. This makes the elite 11-game stretch look like a gift from basketball Santa, so to speak — again, I’m grasping at straws. It’s Christmas, cut me some slack.