Memphis Grizzlies

2009 Memphis Grizzlies

The Memphis Grizzlies ended the 2008-09 season with a disappointing last place finish in the Southwest Division, but hopes are high for the 2009-10 season. They have a promising young core with Darrell Arthur, Rudy Gay, Marc Gasol, O.J. Mayo, and the number 2 overall draft pick Hasheem Thabeet. Picking up Zach Randolph is an upgrade over the Warrick-Arthur combo, though some question adding Allen Iverson. Regardless of what the critics say, the Grizzlies have a great squad and however Iverson works out, itís sure to be very entertaining. If you want to catch all the action live, then pick up your FedExForum tickets right here and get ready for some heart-pounding basektball!

In 1946, the Toronto Huskies were the first professional basketball team in Canada. The team was a member of the Basketball Association of America, the predecessor of the NBA. In 1995, the NBA expanded north with two new teams, the Toronto Raptors and the Vancouver Grizzlies. The Vancouver Grizzlies locked up Brian Winters to be their first head coach. Winters was a long time assistant under Lenny Wilkens, the NBA's all-time winningest coach. The inaugural pick of the Grizzlies was the seven-foot center out of Oklahoma State, Bryant Reeves, aptly referred to as "Big Country."

The team has struggled in the NBA since it joined the league. Expansion is tough, and the Grizzlies learned that first hand. Despite early draft picks and coaching changes, the team struggled in Vancouver. So, in 2001, the Grizzlies packed up and moved to Memphis, Tennessee. The relocated basketball team found itself in a new city and in a new arena, FedExForum. The downtown arena seats 18,000 fans and is located less than one block south of historic Beale Street. The designers of the stadium were interested in building an arena that could capture the energy and excitement of downtown Memphis and bring it inside a basketball arena and entertainment venue.

Memphis is also home to the Memphis Tigers, who are always competitors in basketball in Conference USA, and have the potential to pull a big upset come tournament time. The team often draws tough out-of-conference opponents, such as Illinois, Wake Forest, and Missouri, making tickets tough to come by. The city of Memphis also hosts the Memphis Redbirds, a minor league baseball team in the St. Louis Cardinals system, a flourishing rugby team, the Memphis Blues, and the NFL's Tennessee Oilers, now known as the Tennessee Titans, playing in Memphis since 1997.

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