The “Grit ‘N Grind” identity that the Memphis Grizzlies have embodied for nearly a decade has faded to black.
First, it was Zach Randolph — the heart and soul of the Grizzlies for years — who signed a two-year deal this summer to join to Sacramento Kings. Then on Monday, after a standstill with Memphis management, Tony Allen — “The Grindfather” himself — inked a one-year deal with the New Orleans Pelicans.
Mike Conley and Marc Gasol remain core pieces of a Grizzlies team still hoping to compete in the toughened Western Conference, and both were integral to forming Grit ‘N Grind in Memphis. But as the Grizzlies trend toward youth, athleticism, and perimeter shooting, their identity will change.
In honor of what Memphis was and, in all likelihood, will no longer be, we asked you for some of your top Grit ‘N Grind moments over the years. Here’s what you came up with:
Zach Randolph vs. Blake Griffin Pts. 1, 2, 3 and 4
Here’s a different angle of Randolph choke-slamming Griffin
#1 No question is Zach Randolph putting Blake Griffin in a chokehold https://t.co/vmC0Y6gftA— . (@ZoroastrianFunk) September 11, 2017
Here’s a close-up of the choke-slam
Tony Allen: “First Team All-Defense”
This was the same game he didn’t need help guarding Stephen Curry
When Tony Allen got a bucket and stared down Michael Jordan, sending everyone into tears
Bulduğu basketten sonra Michael Jordan'a sert bir bakış atan Tony Allen'a Majesteleri gülerek cevap vermiş pic.twitter.com/jJojl3N06M— Her Şey NBA (@herseynba) November 22, 2016
Tony Allen really moves his feet defensively
When Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol came together to destroy the Clippers in the paint
When Tony Allen gave not one care about the Warriors’ kids dancers
When Z-Bo got suspended Game 7 for punching Steven Adams
Marc Gasol’s flailing arms
Ryan Hollins tipped this inbound pass, but Courtney Lee finished for the win anyway
When the Grizzlies beat the Spurs in the 2011 playoffs
Beating the spurs as an eighth seed DEFINITELY the top one for me. https://t.co/qQyHnNCjxX— ovo nikko (@aynikko) September 11, 2017
That gasol last second drain against the spurs in the playoffs— Stanton Spencer (@stan_spencer422) September 11, 2017
Even Spurs fans had to give it up
them beating us in the 2011 playoffs. not supposed to be a favorite but they were excellent and deserved the win https://t.co/jUhl8pQEFO— #WatGudd (@play_on_verbs) September 12, 2017
As a spurs fan I say when they beat us as the 8 seed. We never move up to take Kawhi if that didn't happen!— Gervin (@GervinTwittiot) September 12, 2017
When Tony Allen hit O.J. Mayo, who owed him money
Nah, this is hilarious:
From Adrian Wojnarowski
Mayo owed Allen money from a card game, “Boo-Ray” and sources said Mayo became increasingly belligerent and antagonistic toward Allen when asked to settle the debt. Sources said Allen walked away from Mayo to go the restroom and returned to find Mayo continuing to berate him. Eventually, Mayo inched close to Allen, and sources said Allen hit Mayo.
“Tony warned [Mayo] to watch his mouth, and [Mayo] wouldn’t do it and just kept going off on him,” a source with knowledge of the incident told Yahoo! Sports.
From Gary Parrish:
Grizzlies teammates O.J. Mayo and Tony Allen were involved in a fight with each other that stemmed from a gambling dispute during a card game on the flight home from Los Angeles after Sunday night’s win over the Lakers, three different sources have told CBSSports.com. Two of those sources said the altercation left Mayo with a noticeably “swollen” face.
The Grizzlies will never be the same without Zach Randolph and Tony Allen. Now, it’s up to Marc Gasol and Mike Conley to carry the torch.
The “Grit ‘N Grind” era is done. We’ll miss it.