The Memphis Grizzlies decided to make a coaching change after a rough start to the NBA season and are currently out of the playoff picture in the stacked Western Conference. It is being reported that one of the main reasons that Fizdale was shown the door in Memphis was because of the ongoing disagreements that he would have with Marc Gasol. Fizdale and Gasol apparently could not agree on anything and Gasol even questioned if Fizdale deserved to be an NBA head coach. However, Gasol is hiding the real reasons that he butted heads with Fizdale.
Increase in three-pointers
Marc Gasol’s style of play changed because of the new direction of the NBA for big men. Power forwards and centers in the NBA are shooting more three pointers and jump shots than ever. This reflects Gasol’s increase in launching up three-balls. Gasol averaged only 0.6 three-pointers a game before exploding for 3.6 attempts in 2016 and now 4.5 attempts this season.
This is where Fizdale comes in. Coming from the Miami Heat, Fizdale watched Hassan Whiteside dominate the paint and not settle for three-point attempts. Gasol however, was much more comfortable playing outside the paint and trusting his deep jump-shots. This created several arguments between the two, and obviously Gasol continued to hoist up triples during the regular season.
Gasol was the only star
When your team’s starting lineup consists of Mike Conley, Andrew Harrison, James Ennis, and JaMychal Green, you are going to need Gasol to stuff the stat sheet. Fizdale expected Gasol to put up career numbers, especially with the lack of scoring from the rest of the starting lineup. This is a difficult task for Gasol to follow because he is a not-so-spry 32 years old and past his prime. I do not think that a normal NBA fan knew that Andrew Harrison and JaMychal Green were even in the NBA let alone starting on the Memphis Grizzlies.
Gasol tried tanking
The Memphis Grizzlies have a very low probability of making any sort of noise in the playoffs or attracting another star. So, Gasol tried to anger David Fizdale as much as he could to get traded. Gasol probably went as far to airballing shots on purpose in practice and shooting from wherever Gasol caught the ball on the court. Andrew Bynum was noted for doing this in the past with the Cavs. Fizdale surely had to be frustrated with the effort that Gasol had been showing, and this led to tons of disagreements between the two.
If this theory is true, then Gasol was absolutely angered by the fact that Fizdale left before he did. Now Gasol is truly stuck with a horrible starting lineup and no shot at winning an NBA championship.