Grizzlies now face expectations, but they have an answer

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Things are going to be different for the Memphis Grizzlies next season.

They are moving from the Tuesday night game where the season ticket holder can’t give away his seats to a game people want to see. Zach Randolph has become a name sports fans know for more than his past — not basketball, fans, they knew, but casual sports fans. People want to see that other Gasol.

Things will be different and Randolph told the Commercial Appeal the team gets that.

“There are expectations now,” Randolph said. “People are going to expect us to be better. People will look at us as one of the top teams.”

That also means other teams will not consider the game a night off, they will sneak up on nobody. Basically, they have to be better. How does that happen?

The Grizzlies have an answer.

“When Rudy Gay gets back we’ll be a better team,” Griz guard O.J. Mayo said. “It’ll definitely help us on the perimeter as far as scoring and I think we’ll be a better team.”

“Once we get Rudy back, we’ll be back to having a complete team,” Griz guard Mike Conley said. “And now we know what it’s like to be in this position. That combination will make us a lot better.”

Gay was a member of Team USA last summer in Turkey and is the best perimeter player the Grizzlies have by a long shot. Gay separated his shoulder back on Feb. 15 and has been out since. He tried to make a return for the playoffs but it has not healed enough.

But he will be ready to go whenever the post-lockout training camps open. And the Grizzlies instantly will be better.