Behind Gasol And Randolph, Grizzlies Poised To Contend In West Once Again


Memphis Grizzlies fans pretty much know what they’re getting heading into the 2015-16 NBA season. The Grizzlies have been to the playoffs in each of the past five consecutive seasons and with Marc Gasol back in town after dabbling in free agency, odds are the Grizz are going to make it six in a row. Nothing is ever guaranteed in the crowded Western Conference, of course, but after giving the NBA champion Golden State Warriors a solid fight in the playoffs despite not having a completely healthy Mike Conley, Memphis knows they’re ready to take the next step forward.

Unfortunately, Memphis must conduct their journey while holding residency in arguably basketball’s toughest division. In fact, all five teams, also including the Spurs, Rockets, Pelicans, and Mavericks, made the playoffs a season ago. While their recently released 2015-16 schedule won’t be a cakewalk, Memphis can at least rest easy knowing that they’re only in the middle of the road when it comes to traveling this season. Per NBAsavant.com, the Grizz will rack up 44,941 miles this season and that could end up helping them stay fresh for later on in the year.

Despite being a perennial playoff contender and having high hopes for the upcoming NBA season, Memphis continues to return solid value to their fans, with the average price for these Grizzlies tickets coming in at $203.22. Fans get a mixed bag of value when it comes to their home opener and their December holiday game, however. Let’s take a look at both while we break down the matchups, with information provided by TiqIQ.com:

10/28/2015 VS. Cleveland Cavaliers at FedExForum | Avg: $352.72 | Get-in: $69

Memphis opens its 2015-16 campaign at home against LeBron James and the Cavs, so no one should be shocked that this one averages out at a hefty $352.72. The impact of Cavaliers tickets can be felt here ($296.95 average for the year), while the star power of James, Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving obviously adds to the allure. These are two very good teams that will look to start the new season off with a win, which could give fans one heck of a game to get the season going. Memphis hangs their hat on defense and probably wins the battle down low with Gasol and Zach Randolph, but it’s certainly debatable that they may not have the offensive firepower to keep up with Cleveland. Regardless, it should be an intense matchup and fans that can’t afford the pricier seats still have a great opportunity to catch the home opener, as the cheap seats are a feasible $69.

For out-of-town fans wanting to take advantage of that low get-in price, cheap Memphis airfare can be booked through Hipmunk.com. Additionally, for those who want to turn it into a basketball vacation to kick off the new season, Memphis hotels starting as low as $59 can be booked through Hipmunk as well.

12/26/2015 @ Charlotte Hornets at Time Warner Cable Arena | Avg: $199.92 | Get-in: $99

The day after Christmas gives Memphis fans a nice game to go to with the family, as their date in Charlotte with the Hornets is a reasonable $199.92 on average. Charlotte has improved across the board after adding Nicolas Batum, Jeremy Lin and drafting Frank Kaminsky, but Grizzlies fans can rest easy knowing they’ll probably get a nice road win in this one. Kemba Walker and Al Jefferson add some solid star appeal, but Charlotte wasn’t a playoff team a year ago and overall, doesn’t look like they match up very well with Memphis. The get-in price is a tad steep for this one, but fans enjoying the holiday shouldn’t mind with a likely win coming at the end of regulation.

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