Aside from fans in Memphis, not many people recognize the Grizzlies as the talented squad that they are. Whenever I ask any of my colleagues, who are all NBA junkies, about the Memphis Grizzlies, they usually respond by saying, oh those scrubs in the west with Mayo. Clearly the Grizzlies are not scrubs and Mayo is not the ideal player to think of when referencing the franchise. Sadly, these remarks are not uncommon and the Grizzlies are constantly judged by their pastcouple seasons which were subpar to say the least. However, with this lack of expectations comes opportunities to gain recognition and exposure in the playoffs, assuming Memphis makes it there.
Heading into the playoffs, Memphis has nothing to lose but everything to gain. A competitive series or first round upset will result in a larger fan base, more recognition throughout the NBA, and experience to prepare our younger players for future seasons. A good performance in the post season will also insure that Zach Randolph re signs with the Grizzlies.
Whose to say an upset isn’t possible? Upsets in the playoffs have been recurrent throughout NBA history, the most notable in recent history being in the 2007 NBA playoffs where the 8 seed Golden State knocked out the 1 seed Dallas. An upset is usually the result of a higher seeded team undersetimating a talented but underrated lower seeded team. Although, the Grizzlies and the 07 Warriors have completely different styles of play, their situations are very similiar.
Say the Grizzlies get swept or lose their first round series 4-1. All that can really be said is that Memphis is a lower seeded teamthat lost badly to a higher seeded team as expected. People’s opinions of the Grizzlies will not change and you as fans will hopefully stay loyal to the team.
The worst case scenario for the Grizzlies, assuming they make the playoffs, is to stay in the same position that they are currently in. A victory or at least a competitive series will be nice but is not neccessary as Memphis is still growing as a team and just needs playoff experience this season to prepare for the futurewhich is guaranteed if they make it tothe postseason. The Grizzlies have played all oftheir possible opponents very tough this year and should continue to play fearlessly and competitively in the playoffs.