NBA GMs: Grizzlies defense is really, really good
The annual NBA GMs survey hitting the internet means there is going to be lots of praise of the Grizzlies defense on the web today. It seems like a yearly tradition with the poll. No matter what, the Grizzlies always get their praise on the defensive end—and rightfully so.
It all starts with the question, who is the best defensive player in the NBA:
1. Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio — 27.6 percent
2. Anthony Davis, New Orleans — 17.2 percent
3. LeBron James, Cleveland — 13.8 percent
4. Tony Allen, Memphis — 10.3 percent
5t. Draymond Green, Golden State — 6.9 percent
5t. DeAndre Jordan, L.A. Clippers — 6.9 percent
There's a familiar name: Tony Allen, who actually might be better than James at this point in the King's career considering his coasting tendencies on D early in games and throughout the regular season. That isn't the only spot where Allen's or a Grizzlies' name pops up, though.
There's best perimeter defender:
1. Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio — 44.8 percent
2. Tony Allen, Memphis — 17.2 percent
3t. Jimmy Butler, Chicago — 10.3 percent
3t. LeBron James, Cleveland — 10.3 percent
Also, best interior defender brings out a name all Grizzlies fans boast:
1. Marc Gasol, Memphis — 27.6 percent
2t. Anthony Davis, New Orleans — 17.2 percent
2t. DeAndre Jordan, L.A. Clippers — 17.2 percent
4. Rudy Gobert, Utah — 17.2 percent
5t. Dwight Howard, Houston — 6.9 percent
5t. Serge Ibaka, Oklahoma City — 6.9 percent
Gasol is a former Defensive Player of the Year coming off the best season of his life. It's no surprise he tops the list of best interior defenders. Actually, the only surprise here is that he's merely under the category of “Also receiving votes” under the “Who is the best defensive player in the NBA?” category.
Coach Dave Joerger got some love, too, when the GMs were asked which coach had the best defensive schemes:
1. Gregg Popovich, San Antonio — 31 percent
2. Dave Joerger, Memphis — 27.6 percent
3. Steve Kerr, Golden State — 13.8 percent
4t. Steve Clifford, Charlotte — 6.9 percent
4t. Jason Kidd, Milwaukee — 6.9 percent
Because of all that, the GMs named Memphis the second-best defensive team in the NBA, behind the Warriors. They also picked Memphis to finish sixth in the West.