Rise & Grind - 1/6/22 | Where Is The Snow, Grizz Preview and Mike Wallace

Rise & Grind: Where Is The Snow, Grizz Preview and Mike Wallace

On today’s show: Meghan and Jessica preview the Grizzlies matchup with the Pistons and discuss Antonio Brown’s situation before talking more Grizzlies with Mike Wallace. The ladies also discuss the broken rail at FedEX Field before delving into a wide array of pop stories from the Grammy’s and Golden Globes getting postponed to Kim K and Pete Davidson hanging out in the Bahamas.

(start) Snow shenanigans
(11:16) Grizzlies v. Pistons preview
(12:30) Antonio Brown saga
(27:18) Mike Wallace
(51:02) Jalen Hurts wants rail fixed at FedEx Field
(53:43) Aaron Rodgers wants to be MVP
(1:13:14) Grammy’s and Golden Globes get postponed
(1:23:23) Sterling Shepard and Chanel Iman divorce
(1:26:55) Pete Davidson and Kim K in the Bahamas

Rise & Grind - 12/13/21 | Z-Bo Jersey Retirement, Mike Wallace and Meg The Graduate

Rise & Grind: Z-Bo Jersey Retirement, Mike Wallace and Meg The Graduate

On today’s show: Meghan and Jessica recap a crazy weekend around Memphis and talk about Zach Randolph’s jersey retirement before getting Mike Wallace’s thoughts about Z-Bo and the Grizzlies matchup with the 76ers. The ladies also discuss the Memphis Tigers losing to Murray State, Urban Meyer losing the locker room, ‘Just Like That’ news, and more.

(start) Tornado damage
(10:28) Zach Randolph jersey retirement
(27:01) Mike Wallace
(48:50) Memphis Tigers basketball struggles
(1:16:19) Just Like That spoiler
(1:31:56) Travis Scott off of Coachella
(1:33:20) Megan Thee Stallion graduates from TSU

MikeCheck: Grizzlies channel ‘Z-Bo’ type grit while grinding through resurgent defensive stretch

MEMPHIS – Still gasping for air moments after arguably the Grizzlies’ biggest win of the season, Jaren Jackson Jr. had two priorities as he placed a huge home victory over LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers into proper perspective.

First, Jackson saluted the festive fans at FedExForum for the spark they provided to push the Grizzlies to that 108-95 triumph after they overcame an early deficit to ultimately pull away.

And then, with the full sense of Thursday’s accomplishment yet to set in, Jackson turned the page to the next big opportunity his franchise and its fans face back in the building on Saturday.

Jaren Jackson Jr. against the Lakers
MEMPHIS, TN – DECEMBER 9: Jaren Jackson Jr. #13 of the Memphis Grizzlies celebrates a three point basket during a game against the Los Angeles Lakers. Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images.

“It’s Z-Bo Day…let’s turn up!” an ecstatic Jackson shouted into the camera as he was interviewed on the court during the Grizzlies postgame broadcast. “Shoutout to Z-Bo. That’s my brother. It says a lot (to beat the Lakers). But we’re going to need the fans for the next one, for sure. This means nothing without the fans.”

Jackson’s call to action comes with the Grizzlies (15-11) amid their best stretch of the season, playing with a brand of rugged and relentless effort synonymous with one of the greatest legends to ever wear the team’s uniform.

The Grizzlies have won six of their last seven games and sit fourth in the Western Conference standings as they enter Saturday’s game against the surprisingly surging Houston Rockets. But that night’s spotlight will shine on beloved former Grizzlies forward Zach Randolph, who will become the franchise’s first player to have his jersey retired and lifted to the rafters.

Jackson considers Randolph his “big brother” in so many ways.

Shoutout to Z-Bo. That’s my brother. It says a lot (to beat the Lakers). But we’re going to need the fans for the next one, for sure. This means nothing without the fans.

Jaren Jackson Jr.

Both played at Michigan State under long-time coach Tom Izzo nearly two decades apart.

Both ended up anchoring the power forward position in Memphis for the Grizzlies. Randolph’s bruising, low-post dominance rooted the ‘Grit & Grind’ Grizzlies through the franchise’s most successful stretch in history with seven straight playoff berths, including a trip to the 2012 Western Conference Finals. A two-time NBA All-Star during his 17 seasons, Randolph averaged 16.6 points and 9.1 rebounds in 1,116 games for five teams. His greatest impact – on and off the court – was in Memphis with the Grizzlies for eight seasons from 2009 through 2017.

Randolph embraced everything about his role in Memphis. He thrived at snagging key rebounds and making clutch shots in playoff games. He strived at paying utility bills for disadvantaged Memphis residence and donating pandemic relief resources to Shelby County Schools.

I might cry, man, because I was a statistic, man. I was coming from a bad place. I came from nothing, you know. So, for me to be where I’m at and to accomplish what I did, to get the love every time I come back to Memphis…that kind of genuine love, it don’t always happen like that. You know how it is, man. It’s Grit & Grind for life.

Zach Randolph

When first informed his No. 50 jersey would be retired – as eventually will those of his Core Four teammates Mike Conley, Tony Allen and Marc Gasol – Randolph was overcome with emotion. He could only imagine what he’d feel on that ceremonial night on the court.

That night arrives Saturday in a postgame tribute unlike any ever planned at FedExForum.

“Oh my goodness – a poor kid from Marion, Indiana, came from a poor, single-parent home, the oldest of four siblings, mother on welfare…oh, man. Wow!” Randolph told Grind City Media recently “I might cry, man, because I was a statistic, man. I was coming from a bad place. I came from nothing, you know. So, for me to be where I’m at and to accomplish what I did, to get the love every time I come back to Memphis…that kind of genuine love, it don’t always happen like that. You know how it is, man. It’s Grit & Grind for life.”

Meanwhile, Jackson is currently steering the ‘NxtGen’ Grizzlies through a bit of a renaissance defensively. After ranking last or near the bottom among the NBA’s 30 teams in defensive rating through the season’s first 20 games, the Grizzlies have flipped the script to win six of their last seven games. And of those six wins, they’ve held five opponents below 100 points.

Are we going to play to our standard…and how are we going to continue to find our way over 48 minutes? Obviously (Thursday’s victory) was a standard-type win, something I would definitely point to. But they know me. I’m just going to turn the page to the next one and say, ‘Hey guys, we’ve just got to keep getting better.’

Taylor Jenkins

Memphis entered the weekend ranked No. 1 in the NBA in defensive rating since Nov. 28. That surge was capped by Thursday’s performance when the Grizzlies recorded a season-high 18 steals and scored 27 points off 22 Los Angeles turnovers. The Grizzlies are back ranked among the league’s leaders in steals, rebounds and deflections – all categories they excelled in last season.

Remarkably, they’ve done it with several key players sidelined over the past two weeks. Franchise catalyst and leading scorer Ja Morant remains out with a knee injury and veteran swingman and defensive stopper Dillon Brooks is currently in the NBA’s health and safety protocols. Productive reserves Brandon Clarke and Ziaire Williams are also out with injuries.

Yet the resilient Grizzlies continue to find a way to push forward with collective effort.

“It doesn’t matter who you’re playing, where you’re playing, what happened the games before and all of that stuff,” Grizzlies coach Taylor Jenkins said of his team’s recent turnaround. “Are we going to play to our standard…and how are we going to continue to find our way over 48 minutes? Obviously (Thursday’s victory) was a standard-type win, something I would definitely point to. But they know me. I’m just going to turn the page to the next one and say, ‘Hey guys, we’ve just got to keep getting better.’”

That sounds exactly like something Randolph would say after a big performance.

Fittingly for the Grizzlies, that next one comes Saturday – Z-Bo Day.

The contents of this page have not been reviewed or endorsed by the Memphis Grizzlies. All opinions expressed by Michael Wallace are solely his own and do not reflect the opinions of the Memphis Grizzlies or its Basketball Operations staff, owners, parent companies, partners or sponsors. His sources are not known to the Memphis Grizzlies and he has no special access to information beyond the access and privileges that go along with being an NBA accredited member of the media.

Rise & Grind - 12/9/21 | Teresa Walker, Lionel Hollins and Squeegees

Rise & Grind: Teresa Walker, Lionel Hollins and Squeegees

On today’s show: Meghan and Jessica talk Titans and NFL with Teresa Walker, Grizzlies and Tony Elliott with Mike Wallace and Zach Randolph’s importance to the city of Memphis with former Grizzlies head coach Lionel Hollins.

(7:10) Teresa Walker
(24:42) Mike Wallace
(49:56) Pat Bev thinks Royce O’Neal is too small
(54:22) USAG issues
(1:04:00) Lionel Hollins
(1:29:05) Jennifer Anniston Interview

Rise & Grind - 12/8/21 | Mike Wallace, DeAngelo Williams and Wine and Oreos

Rise & Grind: Mike Wallace, DeAngelo Williams and Wine and Oreos

On today’s show: Jessica and Meghan discuss the ’50 For Da City’ and preview the Grizzlies v. Mavs with Mike Wallace. DeAngelo Williams hops on before the ladies discuss John Legend’s Vegas residency, Barefoot wine and Oreos deal and more.

(start) 50 For Da City
(24:24) Mike Wallace
(35:16) Ja High School retires jersey
(43:14) DeAngelo Williams
(1:13:35) John Legend Residency in Vegas
(1:13:15) Jenjamin sighting
(1:17:51) Barefoot wine partners with Oreo

Rise & Grind - 11/24/21 | Ja Morant's Nike Commercial, Mike Wallace and DeAngelo Williams

Rise & Grind: Ja Morant’s Nike Commercial, Mike Wallace and DeAngelo Williams

On today’s show: Meghan and Jessica recap all the fun from last night’s NBA action, discuss Ja Morant’s Nike commercial, Thanksgiving prefs and more. DeAngelo Williams joins in on the fun as well.

MikeCheck: Brooks boosting Grizzlies on both ends of floor amid impactful return from injury

There’s not a more mentally strong or confident player on the Grizzlies roster – and perhaps in the entire NBA – than Dillon Brooks.

Just ask Dillon Brooks.

But even the Grizzlies fifth-year swingman emerged from a pregame workout a week ago with plenty of uncertainty. He wondered how long it would take for him to regain his form after missing the season’s first month to recover from a broken hand he sustained over the summer.

Despite making it back in time to participate in training camp, Brooks was sidelined again after further exams revealed more time was needed for the hand to properly heal. So instead of opening the season in late October with his teammates, Brooks didn’t make his debut until nearly a month later, with the Grizzlies on the verge of four losses in a five-game stretch.

Simply put: Brooks is trying to make up for lost time at a delicate point in the season.

Dillon Brooks driving to the basket
MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE – NOVEMBER 10: Dillon Brooks #24 of the Memphis Grizzlies goes to the basket against Cody Martin #11 of the Charlotte Hornets during the second half at FedExForum. Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images.

“The biggest hurdle is just catching up, wondering, ‘How can I make an imprint? How can I make a difference on the floor?’” Brooks said ahead of the Grizzlies two-game trip that starts Saturday against Minnesota. “Every night, being 11 games behind, it’s a hurdle trying to figure my way through the offense and defense, figuring out what I can do to make both sides better.”

With Brooks back and regaining rhythm with each game, his imprint is having a definitive impact on the Grizzlies. Through four games this season, the 6-foot-7 small forward is averaging 19.3 points, three rebounds and 1.3 steals in 26.5 minutes. And it didn’t take long for Brooks to find his shooting touch, considering he’s converting at a 46-percent clip from the field overall and 44.4-percent from three-point range.

But what’s been most impressive about Brooks is the how effective and efficient the team has been when he’s on the floor. In Thursday’s 12-point home win over the Clippers, Brooks played 27 minutes and led the Grizzlies with a plus-22 rating in plus-minus impact while contributing 18 points and serving as the primary defender on All-NBA forward Paul George.

Every night, being 11 games behind, it’s a hurdle trying to figure my way through the offense and defense, figuring out what I can do to make both sides better.

Dillon Brooks

In his previous outing on Monday, Brooks was a plus-31 in plus-minus over 23 minutes on the court during a 136-102 rout of the Rockets. Teammates and coaches are seeing incremental progress overall defensively this week after a sluggish start to the season.

The expectation now is that with two days of practice time, in addition to the boost of consecutive victories, the Grizzlies can gradually improve an overall defensive rating that sits 29th among 30 NBA teams. With Brooks healthy as the team’s unquestioned swagger catalyst and perimeter defensive standout, there soon should be tangible evidence of a turnaround.

“One of Dillon’s great strengths, among multiple strengths, is his defensive intensity, execution and pure abilities,” Grizzlies coach Taylor Jenkins said. “We don’t have him to his normal substitution pattern just yet. But it’s going to give us a lot of versatility, having him. I’ve gained a lot of confidence with Dillon out to start the season, to see what Kyle Anderson can do with certain personnel, (and) what bigger wings like Desmond Bane and De’Anthony Melton have shown us. But now, when you have multiple guys and Brooks getting a bulk of that share, we have more depth throughout the game to give us a lot more defense intensity.”

Dillon Brooks guarding Paul George
MEMPHIS, TN – NOVEMBER 18: Paul George #13 of the Los Angeles Clippers is defended by Dillon Brooks #24 of the Memphis Grizzlies. Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images.

Few players in the league embrace their defensive role with the level of intensity Brooks brings to the court each night. Five seasons into his NBA career, Brooks is still motivated by having slipped to the 45th overall pick in the second round of the 2017 NBA Draft after a decorated college career as PAC-12 Player of the Year out of Oregon.

As the longest-tenured member of the Grizzlies, Brooks has played for three different head coaches. He’s seen the roster transform from a veteran-laden group anchored by Marc Gasol and Mike Conley to one now fueled by 22-year-old stars in Jaren Jackson Jr. and Ja Morant.

Brooks is midway through a three-year contract extension that allowed him to solidify a starting role as well as give the Grizzlies one of the best return-on-investment deals in the league.

We don’t have him to his normal substitution pattern just yet. But it’s going to give us a lot of versatility, having him. I’ve gained a lot of confidence with Dillon out to start the season, to see what Kyle Anderson can do with certain personnel, (and) what bigger wings like Desmond Bane and De’Anthony Melton have shown us. But now, when you have multiple guys and Brooks getting a bulk of that share, we have more depth throughout the game to give us a lot more defense intensity.

Taylor Jenkins

The two-game trip is symbolic for Brooks because it wraps up with the Grizzlies facing the Jazz on Monday in Salt Lake City. The Grizzlies return for the first time since they lost last season to the top-seeded Jazz in five games during a breakthrough postseason run after the Grizzlies won the NBA’s Play-In Tournament to secure the No. 8 seed.

At the end of last season, Brooks was a key reason why the Grizzlies pushed through to become the youngest team in a decade to advance to the NBA playoffs. In that series against the Jazz, Brooks significantly increased his regular-season production to average 25.8 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.4 steals while shooting 52.8-percent from the field and 42.9-percent on threes.

As a result, Brooks garnered league-wide attention as one of the NBA’s best young two-way players, equally capable of impacting a game on offense and defense.

Returning to Salt Lake City on Monday is a reminder of the form to which Brooks seeks to reclaim in helping the Grizzlies reach their potential this season.

“My whole thing is to be patient. I know I want to get back to where I was locked in at the end of last year, but I have to be really diligent,” Brooks said. “I’ve put in the work to earn that respect and to have that voice out there to be a leader on that end of the floor for my teammates, be that dog out there to lead us defensively and set the tone.”

Brooks is confident it’s only a matter of time before all the pieces fit together again.

Jenkins saw flashes of that elite wing defense in Thursday’s win against the Clippers, particularly how well Brooks approached the assignment of containing George. In the second game of the season with Brooks out of the lineup, George matched his season high with 15 made shots to finish with 41 points on Oct. 23 in a 120-114 home loss. On Thursday, George was limited to 23 points and never got the Clippers really clicking in a game they trailed by as many as 20.

I’ve put in the work to earn that respect and to have that voice out there to be a leader on that end of the floor for my teammates, be that dog out there to lead us defensively and set the tone.

Dillon Brooks

“Dillon relishes the opportunities to guard some of the best offensive players in the game (and) I thought when he was on Paul George his discipline was phenomenal,” Jenkins said. “(Brooks) had a good offensive game tonight, but when he puts that effort forward defensively, it filters throughout the team, and everyone feels that. I’m glad Dillon is back and continues to work his way back into full game shape. I’m proud of what he’s done so far.”

Brooks insists the steps forward he’s taken this week only mark the start of his journey back to peak production. Breaking his hand in a random injury during an offseason workout only delayed the momentum he anticipated carrying into this season. His feel for the game, however, is returning with each game he’s on the court.

“It’s been a rough one, but it’s made me grow as a person and it’s made me even more hungry to play this season as well as I can,” Brooks said of the injury and recovery process. “But I feel good; my hand feels great. I feel like I’m getting a little more wind and conditioning with each of these games. I’m having great balance on my shot, playing with great pace and just keeping my teammates involved as I work my way back to where I want to be.”

His impactful feel for the game, however, is growing each time he steps on the court.

The contents of this page have not been reviewed or endorsed by the Memphis Grizzlies. All opinions expressed by Michael Wallace are solely his own and do not reflect the opinions of the Memphis Grizzlies or its Basketball Operations staff, owners, parent companies, partners or sponsors. His sources are not known to the Memphis Grizzlies and he has no special access to information beyond the access and privileges that go along with being an NBA accredited member of the media.

Rise & Grind - 11/18/21 | Mike Wallace, Tamara Brown and WYD

Rise & Grind: Mike Wallace, Tamara Brown and WYD

On today’s show: Meghan starts the show with the sad news about Yung Dolph. She also discusses the NCAA women’s tournament expanding and Cleveland’s name change and Mel Tucker’s big contract. Mike wallace swings thru for his Mike Check Minute and to preview Grizz v. Clippers. Then Tamara Brown hops on to discuss Pats v. Falcons on TNF and to discuss the “wyd” dudes. In POP Meghan talks about going on a double date with your exes, Camila Cabello and Shawn Mendez breaking up and more.

(start) RIP Young Dolph
(8:01) Memphis earthquake
(16:10) NCAA expanding women’s tournament
(18:43) Cleveland Guardians MLB name change
(22:34) Mel Tucker new contract
(31:12) Mike Check Minute
(50:52) Tamara Brown
(1:16:04) Camila Cabello and Shawn Mendez break up

Rise & Grind - 11/15/21 | Titans Rolling, Mike Wallace and Engagement Proposals

Rise & Grind: Titans Rolling, Mike Wallace and Engagement Proposals

On today’s show: Jessica and Meghan discuss the Adele 30 performance and share their thoughts on the weekend that was in the NFL. Mike Wallace swings by to give his Mike Check Minute, discuss what’s going wrong with the Grizzlies and to have a conversation about engagement proposals. The ladies also discuss the Memphis Tigers going for two, Cam Newton’s return, Kendall Jenner’s wedding attire and more.

(start) Adele 30
(9:51) Taylor Swift All to Well
(14:03) NFL talk
(28:49) Mike Check Minute
(30:22) Mike Wallace
(41:46) Proposal stories
(57:06) Cam Newton returns
(1:02:14) Memphis Tigers fall to ECU
(1:08:05) Memphis Tigers basketball
(1:12:47) CJ corner
(1:15:16) All Too Well being played in the club
(1:19:18) Appropriate dress for wedding
(1:24:41) Lil Nas X on Maury
(1:30:22) Memphis Tigers women’s soccer team gets tourney win
(1:33:33) Niele Ivey gets championship net

Rise & Grind - 11/12/21 | Meghan Loves Frasier, Mike Wallace and Lang Whitaker

Rise & Grind: Meghan Loves Frasier, Mike Wallace and Lang Whitaker

On today’s show: Jessica and Meghan recap Thursday Night Football, discuss Meghan’s love of Frasier, Cam Newton’s return to Carolina and OBJ’s decision to go to the Rams. Mike Wallace joins the show to preview Grizzlies v. Suns and Lang Whitaker swings by for a conversation about the Grizzlies, why Matthew Stafford doesn’t have it and more. In POP, the ladies discuss Harry and Meghan walking the red carpet, Paris Hilton getting married, single’s day and more.

(start) Only Murders in the Building/Frasier
(9:27) Ravens v. Dolphins recap
(14:05) Cam Newton back to Panthers
(16:16) OBJ to Rams
(29:44) Mike Check Minute
(30:47) Mike Wallace
(43:46) Lang Whitaker
(1:06:42) CJ’s corner
(1:11:28) Fashion Friday
(1:17:01) Harry and Meghan on the red carpet
(1:19:07) New music
(1:26:33) Paris Hilton gets married
(1:27:42) Singles Day
(1:30:27) Britney Spears goes to court to end conservatorship
(1:32:09) Arby’s vodka