Memphis Grizzlies Can Make the 2010 NBA Playoffs

A. Enslen ButlerContributor IDecember 28, 2009

LOS ANGELES - APRIL 12:  O.J. Mayo #32 of the Memphis Grizzlies sets on the court aganst the Los Angeles Lakers on April 12, 2009 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.   NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
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The Grizzlies? The Memphis Grizzlies?

Don't laugh. As of Monday, Memphis is four-and-one-half games from the No. 8 spot in the Western Conference.

Yes, they are still last in the Southwest Division. But they are only a half-game behind New Orleans and four games behind third-place Houston (and we have no idea what is going to happen with the Tracy McGrady situation).

As we close 2009, I want to give the Grizzlies a four-point plan to make the 2010 NBA Playoffs.

Point One: Decide on the point guard once and for all.

Mike Conley can run hot and cold. Jamaal Tinsley and Marcus Williams are good passers, but horrible shooters. On potential, Conley is probably the best of the three.

But the eye-test tells me that none have made the case to be the every-game starter.

The best solution might be to start O.J. Mayo at point. Although I am not a big fan of that, it might be the best solution.


Point Two: Do not trade Rudy Gay right now.

Since Gay will become a restricted free agent in 2010, they might be tempted to trade him now to get value for him. Don't. Wait until the off season and scan the market. You are going to have the money under the cap to sign him if you want.

Let's see the number before you give him away in a Pau-Gasol-type deal.


Point Three: Keep giving Zach Randolph the ball.

No one is playing better than Zach Randolph. He is playing at an All-Star level while becoming the number one scoring option on the team. As long as they remain the same, the Grizzlies will be fine offensively.


Point Four:  Keep developing Hasheem Thabeet.

Remember him? It is an interesting season where the top pick in the 2009 Draft has not played and the No. 2 is buried on the bench. However, Thabeet has shown to be a defensive force at times. If he can provide some defense and ANY scoring, it could set the Grizzlies apart at the end.

With the four-point plan and a little luck, Memphis can put themselves into position for the No. 8 seed. Tell me what you think. Can Memphis make the playoffs? Or, should fans be happy with a .500 team for now. Let me now in the comments.

Note: You can follow my podcast at Memphis Grizzlies Report .

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