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Mike Conley, Rudy Gay and Marc Gasol have carried high minute loads this season. Gasol plays 37.5 minutes per game, Gay plays 37.6 minutes per game and Conley plays 35.5 minutes per game. All three of them are forced to play a great deal since none of them has a strong starter behind him.
Now, they’ll be able to rest more. The Grizzlies won’t have to work as hard to seal up the remaining games since they’ll be playing light competition. Gasol could sit more and let Dante Cunningham and Hamed Haddadi get minutes to prepare for the playoffs. Haddadi won’t play much in the playoffs, but he’ll still have to audition for any possible suitors in free agency.
Quincy Pondexter would take Gay’s minutes when Gay rests.
Conley’s minutes could be filled by Gilbert Arenas and rookie Josh Selby. Arenas could play a significant backup role in the playoffs. Selby, who has played sparsely this season, could use more experience at the NBA level. He recently came back after his third stint of the season in the NBDL.
This is the right time for Selby to gain experience. The competition isn’t difficult. Selby can play in low-pressure situations. He’ll be able to get comfortable with the point guard position at the NBA level.