Grizzlies cherish great season after loss to Jazz


Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant looks at the scoreboard as he walks upcourt during the second half of Game 5 of the team’s NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Utah Jazz on Wednesday, June 2, 2021, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — We’ll be back.

That was the message from Grizzlies star guard Ja Morant just moments after the season came to an end Wednesday night in Salt Lake City with the Jazz eliminating the Grizzlies four games to one in a hard fought opening round series.

Definitely not your typical one versus eight playoff match-up.

Behind Morant, who averaged over 30 points, eight rebounds and almost five assists a game, Grizz Next Gen showed up and showed out.

Utah was just better.

The best news for Grizz fans, this team was not even supposed to make the playoffs this year.

The rebuild…in year two…is well ahead of schedule.

So this is not how they wanted it to end but the future is oh so bright.

“A lot of mixed emotions.  Obviously, none of us like losing,” Morant said. “We definitely didn’t want our season to end the way it did but we have a lot to be proud of.  Our fight.  We had an unbelievable season.  Everybody is hungry for more.”

“This was an unbelievable season.  Many people are going to say what a good season, this was a great season for the Memphis Grizzlies,” said Grizzlies coach Taylor Jenkins.  “So much individual growth.  So much team growth to get to this point.  So proud of them.  The fight and competitiveness of this team, day in and day out. We have a bright, bright future ahead of us.”

“We’ll be back for sure.  There’s no doubt about that,” said Grizzlies forward Jaren Jackson Junior.  “This season’s for us.  This season’s for the fans.  This is for the city.  We’re going to keep putting things together.  We laid a great foundation and you see the work, you see the work. Thank you to the fans.  Wish I could hug you all, for real.”

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