LAKERS AT GRIZZLIES, 8 P.M. ET

TV: League Pass

  • The Lakers had a team meeting today, the official sign that things are not going right. The players got a chance to voice their displeasure and with everything out in the open, they look to see if their can turnaround their 17-24 record starting with tonight’s game against Memphis. “We’re in a rut right now.” coach Mike Dantoni said. “It’s time to stand up and draw a line the sand. I think things were aired, things were talked about. I think everybody came away positive.” Among the things discussed were players unhappy with their roles. And clearly the team’s chemistry has been an issue. With everything out in the open, the Lakers, who have lost six straight road games, are hoping to put everything behind them. “We had a lot of people not happy with their roles,” Dantoni said. “That really showed up on the defensive end. You’ve got to get yourself mentally ready to go to battle every night. If things aren’t going right, if you’re not feeling good about what’s happening, it’s hard to summon the energy up.”
  • The Grizzlies are playing their first game since Tuesday’s trade with Cleveland. The team sent forward Marreese Speights, guards Wayne Ellington and Josh Selby,  and a future protected first round pick to the Cavaliers in exchange for Jon Leuer. Leuer did not participate in this mornings shootaround as he was still awaiting for his physical papers to be cleared by the league’s office. Guard Chris Johnson, who signed a 10-day contract with the Grizzlies Tuesday, did practice and coach Lionel Hollins said he would throw the 6-6 shooting guard into the mix. Johnson averaged 12.6 points and shot 42 percent with Rio Grande Valley of the NBA D-League. “It’s definitely a blessing,” Johnson said. “I’m looking forward to being here and I’m going to make the best of it. When we were going through walk-through, Tony Allen said whenever you get the chance don’t hesitate, just shoot the ball. Do what got you here.”
  • With the trade, the Grizzlies have just 10 available players for tonight’s game. Hollins said he will have to adjust his rotations, using starting shooting guard Tony Allen also as forward Rudy Gay’s backup, using guard Jerryd Bayless at Allen’s backup at shooting guard, and rookie Tony Wroten as Mike Conley’s backup at the point. Also, center Hamed Haddadi is likely to get more playing time with power forward Darrell Arthur the only other active big man who is avaiable. Johnson will also likely be thrown into the mix.

– By Marlon W. Morgan

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