The Memphis Grizzlies have become synonymous with grinding out ball games and wearing down their opponents. Unfortunately the 2015-16 Grizzlies were unable to withstand a last season barrage of injuries that resulted in nearly 300 total games lost to injury. 118 of their 296 games lost to injury occurred during the final 20 games of the regular season as players like Mike Conley (Achilles), Marc Gasol (foot fracture), and Zach Randolph (knee and ankle issues) all missed significant time.
The explosion in injury totals came as a bit of a surprise as the team has historically done a good job at maintaining player health. Drew Graham had previously kept the team below the league average for games missed in seven of his previous nine seasons. Still the team opted to let Graham go in the offseason. The front office remains confident in their in-house staff promoting assistant Jim Scholler to head athletic trainer. Scholler will work with the recently hired Allen Gruver who will serve as the team’s medical director.
Keeping Gasol on the court will be Scholler and company’s first major task as navicular fractures have been historically problematic for big men. The team has also been carefully managing the knee of Chandler Parsons, Memphis’ big offseason acquisition. Over the past two seasons Parsons has undergone two separate surgeries and will not be ready for the start of the season.