Less than a day after searching for some way to stop San Antonio Spurs point guard Tony Parker, the Grizzlies were still searching Tuesday after lunch. Not searching for Parker, who had already swept right past Memphis and into the NBA Finals, but searching for the missing piece(s) of the puzzle that will take the Grizzlies one more step. As players and coaches filed into the practice facility for their final media availability of the season, there was plenty of reminiscing, remembering the unexpected run without Rudy Gay to their first conference finals and reflecting on a die-hard fan base that gave the club a standing ovation after Monday’s season-ending loss. Reminiscing is good, but savoring the past won't lead to a successful future. All that success has only led to searching. Searching and trying to maintain key pieces already in place. "A shooter would be nice," point guard Mike Conley said. Conley wore a grin with the sentiment, but it's one thing Memphis needs for the offseason. The Spurs' inside defense exposed the Grizzlies’ lack of a scary scorer. "We’ve got to get quicker, and bigger on the front line," said Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins. "We’ve got to add more basketball players on the wing. I think every series we’ve lost since I’ve been here, we couldn't make plays from the perimeter." The Grizzlies think they know what it will take to reach the NBA Finals, but there is still much work to do, particularly hanging on to the two guys behind the grit-and-grind way. The biggest question marks involve free agents Hollins and guard Tony Allen. Offensive centerpiece Zach Randolph has two years left on his $34 million deal, but it wasn’t that long ago his name popped up in trade talks — to the chagrin of Grizzlie fans. Hollins doesn’t have a contract extension yet. And though he has no idea what grit-and-grind means, he personifies the hard-nosed term. With big-money Brooklyn among the handful of teams showing interest, Hollins says he wants to come back to Memphis. If it was up to him, a decision wouldn’t be made solely based on dollars — but between the lines. "I'm very hopeful. I don’t know what’s going to happen," Hollins said. "This is a business. This is my first opportunity as a head coach. Having come the way it did, it wasn’t in a normal situation. I'm in a situation where I wanted to establish myself as an NBA coaching commodity and I believe I have with the players we’ve had. There’s other people interested, which makes it very, very nice.” Hollins has raised his stock. Remember, this is the same guy who vehemently opposed trading Gay in late January, once even calling a media meeting to clear the air about a perceived rift between himself and new ownership.
Hollins, Allen headline Grizzlies' uncertain summer
Fox Sports Tennessee | May 29