NBA Word Association Day: Memphis Grizzlies

BOSTON, MA - MARCH 23: Tony Allen #9 of the Memphis Grizzlies celebrates from the bench as a teammate draws the foul in first half against the Boston Celtics the on March 23, 2011 at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Yes, it's that time of the week again, in which the SB Nation NBA blogger get together and work up a community-wide theme. This week, we're going off the grid and playing a little word association! See, each lead blogger was asked to place a word (or words) alongside all 30 NBA teams -- the first word, that is, that comes to mind when you think of a specific team. In this case, duh, we're talking about the Grizzlies. I must say, we got some pretty interesting words to play around with. Some I wouldn't have necessarily thought of.

So, with that, let's play the NBA word association game!

Here are the words that were give to our Grizzlies, and my initial reaction next to them -- call it, double word association!

gritty - Well, that makes sense
Blue - Yup, our color.
Tough - You damn right we are!!!!
Pesky - Really?
Stuck - Contractually, sure. We are who we are over the next 3-4 seasons, barring any major trade.
Threat - Always.
Vancouver - Straight outta...
hip - Really? Thanks. I mean, in the "they're hip and cool" sense, that's awesome. If we're talking injuries... well.
gritty - Theme.
dark horse - We'd like to think so.
perhaps - Maybe.
intriguing - For a team that gets very little national attention, yes, I believe we are too.
Displaced - But... Robert Pera?!
Weird - Tony Allen, Hamed Haddadi, Spezzy Says.... Yeah, I'll accept weird.
BBQ - The best!
meh - Fair enough. You win one playoff series in the history of your franchise... I can see it.
Grit-n-Grind - That was me.
Hold the Mayo - Actually, we NOW prefer our sandwiches to be covered with.... Bayless?
Big - Gasol.
Gasol - Big.
Whimsical - Ummm... OK?
Ketchup - Ummmmmm.... OK? (This one I really don't get, but... OK!)
Burly - Yeah, we're big.
Frisky - That's on Tony Allen, I imagine.
Athletic - Wait, but we're burly?!
BBQ - Lots of hungry people out there.
FedEx - meh.
Almost - You're telling us! We feel the same way, that we're almost there.

In all seriousness, this exercise was a lot of fun. I love seeing what word or words first come to mind when some of the best basketball writers in the world think about the Grizzlies.

I think the conclusion is that most people think of us as a tough, gritty, burly team that is almost there, but not quite a legitimate NBA title threat. That seems fair enough. I mean, I do think of us as a title contender, but I suppose you have to prove it first -- to the non-believers -- by getting out of the first round of the playoffs more than once in your franchise's history! I don't agree that we're "meh" and "almost," but I won't argue against those perceptions.

What do you guys think? First word that comes to mind when you think of the Grizzlies.... GO!

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