Lionel Hollins: Memphis Grizzlies ‘Not a Very Good Team Right Now’

by January 12, 2012

Head coach Lionel Hollins isn’t thrilled with the effort his Memphis Grizzlies are putting forth, and he doesn’t hold back when talking to the Commercial Appeal about it: “It was another sequence tarnished by poor execution when the basketball ricocheted toward Lionel Hollins. After one bounce, Hollins cocked his leg. On the second bounce, the Grizzlies’ head coach unleashed a bit of frustration. Hollins angrily kicked the ball some 25 feet in the air and onto a balcony overlooking the team’s practice court. The Griz take a 3-6 record into their nationally televised game tonight against the New York Knicks, and Hollins clearly is tired of making excuses for punting away games. ‘We’re not scoring consistently. Our defense isn’t consistent. Our rebounding is not very good. We’re not a very good team right now,’ said Hollins, whose squad is mired in a three-game losing streak. ‘That’s why I brought them in today and said (forget) everybody talking about what we don’t have in terms of time and personnel. I’m worried about us playing the right way and playing together.’ The Grizzlies’ main concern should be an unreliable defense. Memphis’ defensive statistics told the story in the team’s wins and losses last season. The same can be said for the first nine games of this campaign. The Griz limited opponents to 91.6 points on 41-percent shooting in wins compared to 96.8 points on 44-percent shooting in losses. Memphis’ turnovers (18.8), steals (11) and points off turnovers (22.3) are also better in its three wins compared to losses. In defeat, the Griz amass an average of nine steals, 16 turnovers and 16 points off turnovers. ‘The defense has got to come,’ Hollins said. ‘We’ve had our moments. We’ve just got to be a little more consistent for longer spurts. It’s a growing process. We have a lot of guys who weren’t here last year that we need to get acclimated to how we play defense. They need to realize how aggressive we are and the whole bit. It took two years to build our defense.'”