It came to a head Tuesday in Memphis’ loss to the Rockets.
Green started, but he missed both his shots and didn’t grab any rebounds in 15 first-half minutes. Memphis got outscored by 10 points with him on the court.
He didn’t play at all in the second half.
Jeff hasn’t gotten it done, and he’s shooting very poorly over the last six games. His attitude hasn’t been the best. He’s not playing very well defensively.
And I know of a guy who matters in that locker room that wanted to wring his neck last night.
After a play? Tillery:
No. I was told, point blank. I was told, point blank, by a guy in that locker room who matters that Jeff doesn’t care.
And if they feel that way – fairly or not – it made sense for Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger to sit Green. Joerger shouldn’t risk alienating other players for Green.
But that’s just a short-term solution.
Even with Green struggling, Memphis will have a tough time filling wing minutes with just Courtney Lee, Matt Barnes, Allen and Vince Carter. That’s especially true because the Grizzlies now go smaller and start three of them.
Joerger must find a compromise – getting Green to play hard enough to justify minutes and convincing his teammates to accept reduced expectations for someone who was supposed to take Memphis to the next level. The Grizzlies don’t need Green to be a star to play him. They just need him to be decent. That’s enough for a first step back on track.
In the long run, they can – as Green’s previous teams have done – hope he form the intriguing elements of his game into a complete package. Failing that – as Green’s previous teams have done – they can look into trading him.