Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley is out for the rest of the season.
From a Grizzlies press release:
Conley will undergo surgery to smooth a small bone protrusion in his left heel that continues to cause pain and soreness. He will be unavailable for the remainder of the 2017-18 season but is expected to make a full recovery prior to 2018-19 training camp.
Quick Reax: Welp. That’s that.
For the record, despite my protestations about why the Grizzlies should NOT tank, I was never one of those who really believed the Grizzlies could make the postseason after falling so far behind in the standings. Nor was I one who thought they should even try, since it would likely mean a first-round sweep at the hands of Golden State or Houston.
But for those who were clinging to hope of seeing Mike get back on the court this season, that’s over. Conley has been recovering from an Achilles injury all season, and it’s unclear whether this injury is related. But surgery is surgery, and here’s hoping Conley sails through it and is back on the court next fall.
What’s just as interesting about the Grizzlies’ health update were the other names it included: Chandler Parsons (day-to-day); JaMychal Green (ankle sprain); and James Ennis III (calf strain). While the latter two are expected to return later this week, Parsons is still out indefinitely.
So what this means is more of what we’ve already seen: The Grizzlies’ youth movement. Young players like Dillon Brooks, Deyonta Davis, Jarell Martin and Wayne Selden are going to get the best player development possible — lots of minutes against NBA players. Some of them, whether they are aware or not, are auditioning for potential trades — possibly throw-ins in the inevitable Tyreke Evans trade.
In theory, this is a good thing. Assuming Conley, Parsons and Gasol all return in good health, the Grizzlies should have a young bench that’s ready to contribute next season.
But this season? Well, enjoy watching the young guns play.