It's that exciting time of the year again as the NBA playoffs are underway. The drama, excitement, and anguish are all what make this time of year fun for basketball fans. Here is a preview for the second seed team in the Western Conference, the Memphis Grizzlies, during the run up to their first postseason game of the playoffs.
The Memphis Grizzlies have had a decent season despite missing their all-defensive star to start the season and Ja Morant's off-court issues. Despite all that, they managed to secure the second seed in the Western Conference, which shows how much this team has grown over the years. They've missed the postseason just once in the last four years and continue to improve season after season. They reached the Western Conference semifinals last season, where they lost to the eventual champions, the Golden State Warriors, after their star guard Ja Morant suffered a knee injury that ruled him out of the NBA playoffs.
This season, they will be looking to take it a step further as they face off against the Los Angeles Lakers in the first round of the 2023 NBA Playoffs. During the regular season, they lost two out of three match-ups against the Lakers. Steven Adams and Brandon Clarke are out for the rest of the season; Memphis will have to rely on the defensive prowess of Dillon Brooks and foul-prone Defensive Player of the Year favorite Jaren Jackson Jr.
Jaren, who led the league in blocks for the second consecutive season will need to step up to contain Anthony Davis and Lebron James. AD, who has been a monster on defense and offense, and Lebron James, who continues to age like fine wine will cause problems for this young Grizzlies squad.
Superstar Ja Morant will have to be at his best to put the Lakers to bed. Sharpshooters Desmond Bane, a third-year guard who deputised well in the absence of Ja Morant and Luke Kennard, who was recently acquired from the Clippers in a three-team trade, would also have to contribute heavily to ensure the Grizzlies eliminate the Lakers. This series will likely go down to the wire, but I tip the Grizzlies to take an early 2-0 lead given their record at home during the regular season. The first game of this seven-game series will be played at FedExForum in Memphis on
Sunday, April 16.
Contributor: Ogunremi Abdul-Muiz Ayodeji (@forza_speziale)
Editor: Josh Bhagratie (@jshyb_)