The Memphis Grizzlies have the worst record in the NBA and could be eliminated from contention before their superstar plays his first game. They have lost eight of their first nine, and Ja Morant is suspended for the first 25 games. Injuries to Steven Adams and Brandon Clarke have not helped, and the Grizzlies desperately need to make a move to save their season.
Things have been bad in Memphis. Trading Tyus Jones and two first-round picks for Marcus Smart has not worked. Desmond Bane and Jaren Jackson Jr. have been unable to step up and lead the team to victories. They are the only three players on the team averaging double-digits in scoring right now. Ja will help, but can he get the team back on track when he returns in December?
The Grizzlies must reverse these five trends if they want to have any chance at returning to contention this season.
5. Stop fouling
Memphis is committing 22.2 personal fouls per game, which ranks 29th in the NBA and is enough to put them in the penalty every quarter. The Rockets are the only team in the bottom ten in fouls with a winning record. The Grizzlies are fouling two more times each game than last season and committing 3.3 more than they are drawing. It is resulting in a significant disparity of 5.6 free throw attempts per game.
Memphis has a tiny margin for error with Morant, Adams, and Clarke out. Giving the opposition five free points each night is backbreaking. Their three best players are all committing over three fouls per game and it must stop if they are going to win without Morant.
Cutting down on their fouls is not the only issue. The Memphis Grizzlies need more from everyone on their roster.