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Grizzlies Marc Gasol sprains ankle, could miss start of season

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UPDATE 11:42 am: X-rays on Gasol’s ankle came back negative, so there is no serious damage. That’s good news, now it’s just a matter of healing and pain tolerance.

No word yet on if he plays Wednesday, may be a game time decision.

10:59 am: Wednesday night, when the Grizzlies open the season against the Hawks, center Marc Gasol may have to sit it out.

Gasol suffered a high ankle sprain in practice Sunday, stepping on the foot of Hasheem Thabeet, according to the Commercial Appeal. He got ice and treatment, but it won’t be until later Monday until the full extent of the injury is known (after an MRI).

However, high ankle sprains are the more serious variety, which can linger for a week or more.

It’s a blow to a Grizzlies team that comes in on a high. They surprised everyone with a 40-win season last year then seemed to step up their play in the preseason, going 8-0. They start the season talking of playoffs, of being a team to fear. Gasol, anchoring down the middle, was a key part of that.

One ankle sprain that could cost a few games does not change that. But it is deflating.

PBT Extra bold prediction previews: Clippers ready to win West?

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With our PBT Extra videos, we are previewing the entire NBA by using bold predictions, starting in the Pacific Division (we already did the Warriors).

Some of those predictions come from fans on Twitter where I had sent out a request, including the bold prediction for the Clippers.

It could happen, they are certainly contenders. But two things need to happen.

The big one is their defense, which was middle of the pack last season, needs to move into the top 10 (and DeAndre Jordan needs to play consistently like a guy who is third in Defensive Player of the Year voting).

Second is the new and improved bench unit of Lance Stephenson, Josh Smith, and Jamal Crawford (he’s not new) need to mesh into a unit. Those are three guys who like to create for themselves and make questionable shot choices, getting them play well with others could be a bumpy road.

Stephen Curry gives high five while his shot is in air (video)

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Stephen Curry said the defending-champion Warriors would have no problem picking up where they left off.

His swagger certainly remains intact.