Last Friday, the Utah Jazz visited the Memphis Grizzlies, marking Mike Conley‘s first game at FedEx Forum in a non-Grizzlies jersey.
Conley is possibly the greatest example of in-house development in Grizzlies history. Taken fourth overall in 2007, he spent twelve years in Memphis, quarterbacking the franchise’s most successful teams ever. He left the Grizzlies as their all-time leader in games, steals, assists, threes and points.
Conley is an aberration as a high-equity young Grizzly who didn’t duck the team (Steve Francis), get traded early (Shareef Abdur-Rahim), suffer a career-ending injury (Bryant Reeves, Michael Dickerson), win elsewhere (Pau Gasol, Shane Battier), prove dysfunctional (Rudy Gay, OJ Mayo), or simply never make it (Hasheem Thabeet).