When: Sunday, October 20th, 2:00 PM CST
Where: Philips Arena, Atlanta, GA
Memphis spent some time with Mickey Mouse in Orlando, and they also managed to get a win against the miserable Magic. Now, they head to Atlanta to take on the Hawks, and they’l be looking to win their third straight preseason game. The biggest story in the the Orlando game was the solid play of Ed Davis, who put up seven points, ten rebounds, and was a +20 for the game. The play of Davis will be a huge factor in determining what this Grizzlies team is capable of. If Davis lives up to his potential, the Grizzlies will have the deepest big man rotation in the NBA, after acquiring Kosta Koufos to be their backup center. For a team as well-assembled as the Grizzlies, the preseason can feel like little more than the opportunity for a tune-p. We know who these guys are, and we know they’re good. It’s not like Z-Bo having a few “meh” outings when he almost certainly isn’t exerting all of his energy is really going to put a scare into Grizz fans. As a result, we tend to spend the preseason looking for whatever little stories we can find, and determining how those stories will end up playing into the larger picture. So…let’s see if Jamaal Franklin can throw down a few thunderous jams!
Atlanta The Hawks seem eternally hell-bent on being Just Good Enough. They’ve had more sustained success than many NBA teams (they’re the only franchise who has reached the playoffs for six straight seasons), but they don’t scare anyone. With the possible exception of the 2009-10 team – when Jamal Crawford won Sixth Man Of The Year – I don’t think anyone has ever seen the hawks as a real title threat. They continued this tradition during offseason, making moves that probably won’t make the team discernibly better or worse. they retained Jeff Teague – a fun point guard who would be more fun on a more fun team, and effectively replaced Josh Smith with Paul Millsap. So, nothing really new or different here. What might change is the quality of the competition. Teams like the Cavs, Pistons, Wizards, Raptors, Pistons improved considerably in the offseason, so the Hawks may no longer have enough in their arsenal to achieve their usual uninspiring playoff appearance. Honestly, this team would be better off sinking down to 30 wins or so and getting a lottery spot.
Be sure to keep tabs on:
– Quincy Pondexter. Because he’s Quincy Pondexter and Quincy Pondexter Rules Everything Around Me. Q.P.R.EA.M. get the money.
– Nick Calathes. Guys…we might have a real backup point guard! THIS IS SO EXCITING
– Dennis Schroeder The Hawks have also have a rookie backup point guard who might be pretty good. I actually wished they had let Teague go, and made Schroeder the starter. Then, they’d be an entertaining lottery team, and Teague could play for a less boring team. Everybody wins!
More on Atlanta:
Assessing the Enemy