Summer rewind: Memphis Grizzlies

Mike Conley returned to the Grizzlies with a huge contract. (AP)
Mike Conley returned to the Grizzlies with a huge contract. (AP)

A look at the key offseason moves and changes for every team in the league. Next up are the Memphis Grizzlies.

Free agents
Mike Conley
Chandler Parsons
James Ennis
Troy Daniels (sign/trade)
D.J. Stephens
Troy Williams
Tony Wroten
Wayne Selden

Wade Baldwin
Deyonta Davis
Andrew Harrison (2015 draft-day trade)

Musical chairs at the top
The Grizzlies sent a ripple effect through the NBA in early May when Dave Joerger was relieved of his coaching duties.

Joerger, with the Grizzlies since 2007 as an assistant coach and the past three seasons as head coach, found work within days of his firing, landing the Kings’ head-coaching job.

The Grizzlies went outside of their coaching tree to hire former Heat assistant David Fizdale to replace Joerger.

Memphis’ last two coaches, Lionel Hollins and Joerger, had strong ties to the organization and served as assistants before taking over the head role.

Injection of youth
Having struggled in previous drafts and with two future first-round picks that will be conveyed, Memphis made a concerted effort this summer to add younger players.

The Grizzlies drafted Wade Baldwin (20) and Deyonta Davis (19), acquired the rights to Andrew Harrison (21) in 2015, and signed free agents Chandler Parsons (27), James Ennis (26) and Troy Daniels (25).

All six players should help alleviate the workload of a Grizzlies roster that predominately features veterans.

Hoping to stay healthy
The Grizzlies made a $240 million-plus investment the first few days of free agency when Mike Conley agreed to return and Memphis came to an agreement with Parsons.

Although Conley and Parsons are in their primes, both players had their seasons cut short because of injuries.

With a limited free-agent market at point guard and without a replacement in waiting, Memphis had little choice but to bring back Conley with a $153 million contract.

The Parsons signing shows how the Grizzlies relied heavily on their medical staff and not their personnel department. Hampered by a right knee injury the past two seasons, Parsons has failed to finish consecutive seasons healthy.

Memphis needs Chandler Parsons to remain healthy. (AP)
Memphis needs Chandler Parsons to remain healthy. (AP)

Player 2016
1. Mike Conley $26,540,100
2. Chandler Parsons $22,116,750
3. Marc Gasol $21,165,675
4. Zach Randolph $10,361,445
5. Brandan Wright $5,709,880
6. Tony Allen $5,505,618
7. Troy Daniels $3,332,940
8. James Ennis $2,898,000
9. Wade Baldwin $1,793,760
10. Deyonta Davis $1,369,229
11. Jordan Adams $1,465,080
12. Jarell Martin $1,286,160
13. Andrew Harrison $945,000

Partial/non-guaranteed 2016
14. JaMychal Green $980,431
15. Vince Carter $4,264,057
16. Tony Wroten $1,050,961
17. D.J. Stephens $874,636
18. Troy Williams $543,471
19. Wayne Selden $543,471

Dead money 2016
Jamaal Franklin $163,296

Salary table 2016
Guaranteed salaries $106,899,637
Dead money $163,296
Non-guaranteed $5,847,027
Tax variance $979,715
Free-agent cap holds $0
Incomplete roster charge $0
Salaries: cap $112,909,960
Salaries: tax $113,889,675
Salary cap $94,143,000
Luxury tax $113,287,000
Cap space None ($18,766,960 over)
Tax room None ($602,675 over)

Memphis began free agency over the salary cap with the large free-agent cap holds of Lance Stephenson, Chris Andersen and Matt Barnes.

The Grizzlies created the necessary room to add Parsons once all three players were renounced.

Memphis used the remaining cap room to sign Davis (its second-round pick), Harrison and Daniels (via sign-and-trade from Charlotte).

The Grizzlies benefited with the $14 million cap hold of Conley. The low cap hold allowed Memphis to use cap space before signing Conley to his starting salary of $26.5 million.

Once Conley re-signed, the Grizzlies then used the room mid-level to sign free agent James Ennis.

Free agents signed in the offseason cannot be traded until either Dec. 15, Jan. 15 or for three months if they signed after Sept. 15.

Parsons, Ennis, Daniels, Williams, Wroten, Selden and Stephens cannot be traded until Dec. 15.

Conley cannot be traded until Jan. 15 because he was signed using Bird rights and his current salary exceeds his previous one by 20 percent.


Tony Allen, entering the final season of a four-year, $20 million contract signed with Memphis in 2013, can have his contract extended.

The Grizzlies, because they are over the cap, are limited to offering Allen a starting salary of $5.9 million in the first year of an extension.

Starter Bench Bench
PG Mike Conley Wade Baldwin Andrew Harrison/Tony Wroten
SG Tony Allen Troy Daniels/Jordan Adams D.J. Stephens/Wayne Selden
SF Chandler Parsons Vince Carter James Ennis/Troy Williams
PF Zach Randolph JaMychal Green Jarell Martin/Deyonta Davis
C Marc Gasol Brandan Wright

The Grizzlies have 13 guaranteed contracts and six players with partial guaranteed contracts, including veteran Vince Carter and sixth man JaMychal Green.

A strong training camp from rookie Troy Williams could make former first-round pick Jordan Adams the odd man out.

Adams was drafted in 2014 but has missed extended time the past two seasons with a recurring knee issue.

The Grizzlies, with $90 million in guaranteed contracts, will not have flexibility in free agency outside of retaining their own free agents.

The large cap holds of veterans Zach Randolph, Allen and Carter will only give the Grizzlies limited cap relief if all three players do not return.

Marc Gasol
Foot surgery and big men have not shared a kind history in recent years.

Unlike guards and wings, who seem to successfully recover from foot surgery, the size of big men has presented a challenge in the rehab and recovery process.

The Nets’ Brook Lopez initially injured his foot in December 2011 and has finally strung together consecutive healthy seasons. However, it took Lopez missing parts of two seasons (2011-12 and 2013-14) to regain his health.

The Grizzlies’ top priority is to avoid any setbacks with Gasol.

Since his foot surgery in late February, Gasol has not had any delays in his recovery, but he will need to be patient in his return to the court.

Previous teams in the series: Hawks | Nets | Clippers | Timberwolves | Jazz | Hornets | Kings | Pacers | Magic | Suns | Knicks

More NBA coverage: