Memphis Grizzlies: What Each Rotation Player Must Improve on for Team to Contend
The Grizzlies proved in last year's playoffs that they were a competitive team that can compete with the Western Conference's elite.
Memphis is a very deep team that has depth as one of its advantages almost every time they're on the floor. That does not mean that their bench could not be better, however. If Memphis' whole entire rotation were to improve on some small things, the Grizzlies could be thinking championship.
Continue reading to find out what every rotation player could afford to work on in order to get the Grizzlies to the next level.
Shooting (easy decision)
Tony Allen was a very important player for the Grizzlies this year. His experience from his Boston days was a major spark for the team in both the regular season and the playoffs.
Allen is an incredible defender capable of shutting down the opposing team's best player regularly. His offensive game, however, is limited because of his poor jump shot.
If Allen could develop even a decent mid range jump shot or three point shot he could be a very solid offensive player to go along with his all-NBA quality defense.
Zach Randolph proved to be one of the best power forwards in the NBA in the playoffs this year, but that was basically all on the offensive side of the ball.
Randolph is a player who you can count on to dominate on offense, but is definitely going to have you scratching your head sometimes on defense.
If Z-Bo could improve on his timing and start blocking some shots or at least alter them, he could be considered the best power forward in the league. That seems like a stretch, but he'd seriously be a candidate. Randolph would be able to leave his mark on both sides of the ball and get the Grizzlies to the championship and maybe even win it.
Grevis Vasquez surprised a lot of people with his play in the playoffs. Especially that one shot he hit against Oklahoma City to force another overtime.
The reason that shot surprised you the most is because Greivis isn't much of a shooter. Greivis is a good point guard for the Grizzlies, but if he could develop a jump shot he'd be much harder to guard.
Being that Greivis is 6'6'', a jump shot would allow him to have a high quality shot at all times, being that the guys guarding him are much shorter.
Conley had a very nice playoffs for the Grizzlies this year and showed people why he deserved that big contract he got in the offseason.
One problem Conley had all season and in the playoffs was that he was very weak. He was able to be exploited easily on defense even though his steal totals may disagree. He's good at getting in the passing lanes, but watching him try to guard Russell Westbrook wasn't easy.
Conley needs to lift weights and get himself more physically ready for next season and he could start to get recognition as one of the top tier point guards in the NBA.
Rudy Gay was injured last season and couldn't be a part of the Grizzlies playoff run, but next year they're going to love to have him back.
Gay is one of the team's best scorers and he is going to help take some pressure off of Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol next season.
One part of Gay's game that if improved could really make him a superstar in this league is his passing. Gay is a big, athletic forward who can beat players off the dribble. He has a smoothness to his game that makes him look like he's not even trying. Gay is very tall and quick and if he was able to use his size and get in lanes to find his teammates, he'd really be a sensational player.
Some nights Sam Young can be a huge bright spot for the Grizzlies, but other nights he's on the floor and you don't even notice.
A lot of this is due to strictly Young's effort it seems. Some nights he's uninterested and struggles to get involved in the offense, but on other nights he seems like one of the best scorers on the court.
If Young can bring intensity the majority of the time he's on the floor then he can really give the Grizzlies a boost towards that NBA championship.
Darrell Arthur is a fan favorite in Memphis and a lot of fans thought that he was good enough to start for the Grizzlies and that they should let Randolph walk. That didn't happen, but it doesn't mean that Arthur isn't a big part of their plans.
Arthur is an athletic freak at the power forward position and an instant spark off the bench. Arthur is a good finisher at the rim, a good defender and even developed a nice mid-range jump shot over the year.
If Arthur could develop some post moves he'd add a dimension to his game that could make him very similar to Randolph offensively. His game comes from his mid-range shot and if he could beat people off the dribble or with his back to the basket, he'd really be a starter who has to come off the bench and not just a bench player.
Although Marc Gasol has gotten in a lot better shape lately, it is still the one thing that he needs to improve on the most.
Gasol is a tough center that has gotten himself into the top five in the NBA at his position. His one problem is his stamina and endurance. If he could get himself into better shape, he will truly benefit himself as he won't disappear at the end of games for the Grizzlies.
Gasol can probably get top three in the NBA consideration at his position and may prove to others that he is in fact better than his brother Pau.