Over the last few seasons in Memphis, Tony Allen helped transform the Grizzlies from an aimless franchise to one with an identity embraced by both the team and the city alike.
Heart, grit, and grind.
Allen’s toughness and skill on the defensive end of the floor is every bit as important to what the team does as the contributions of Mike Conley, Zach Randolph, and Marc Gasol. The Grizzlies realized Allen’s value, and rewarded it with a multi-year deal to keep him in Memphis.
What was first reported by the Memphis Commercial Appeal has since been confirmed by multiple outlets — Allen has agreed to a four-year deal worth $20 million to remain a part of the Grizzlies. But Allen himself scooped everyone with the news.
There was interest in Allen from other teams, of course, including most prominently by the Milwaukee Bucks. But in the end, Memphis did the right thing by retaining one of the better perimeter defenders in the game, and a player who just happens to be at the core of the identity of a team that just finished its best season ever in reaching the Western Conference Finals.
I like the Knicks’ offseason moves. Well, not blowing the meeting with LaMarcus Aldridge before it ever started — you say the right things and take him to a nice dinner because that is the kind of elite player you need to try to land. Take the meeting.
However, bringing in Robin Lopez and Arron Afflalo were smart pickups, and I like the Kristaps Porzingis draft pick more than many (although we need a couple of years to see how good he will really be). Combine that with a healthy Carmelo Anthony and…
The Knicks suck less. They aren’t good, but they aren’t embarrassing. And that is step one, as I discuss with Jenna Corrado in this latest PBT Extra.
So far, the only substantive accounts of the Matt Barnes-Derek Fisher altercation have come from anonymous sources.
The Knicks coach has deflected questions.
But Barnes is giving his account, at least of the lead-up.
Ramona Shelburne of ESPN:
It’s completely understandable that Barnes would act to ensure his children’s welfare.
And let’s say everything he said is true. It still leaves important questions unanswered.
Did Barnes – as he reportedly texted a friend he did – beat up Fisher and spit on his estranged wife, Gloria Govan? If so, why did Barnes deem that necessary to protect kids?