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Grizzlies fans get their first visual look at the team at Houston on Thursday night

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Not having a single stream of video for the Grizzlies first preseason game sucked, so it will be nice to watch the second preseason game, against the Houston Rockets, on NBATV.

Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports
2014/15 NBA Preseason
vs
2013/14:
50-32 (23-18 road)
2013/14:
54-28 (33-8 home)
October 9, 2014
Toyota Center, Houston, TX
7:00 PM CDT
NBATV/ 92.9 FM ESPN
Possible Starters
Mike Conley PG Patrick Beverley
Tony Allen SG James Harden
Quincy Pondexter SF Trevor Ariza
Zach Randolph PF Terrence Jones
Marc Gasol C Dwight Howard
2013/14 Advanced Stats
92.2 (30th) Pace 98.8 (5th)
103.3 (T-16th) OEff 108.6 (4th)
102.1 (T-7th) DEff 103.1 (12th)

Opponent's Blog: The Dream Shake

Both the Rockets and the Grizzlies exited the playoffs in the first round last season. For two supremely talented teams, that was a bit disappointing. This season, these two squads have retooled and stand poised to make deep playoff runs.

Before playoffs talk begins though, both teams will have to run the gauntlet that is the Western Conference and make it to the other side. That is no small feat. The Grizzlies struggled against Southwest Division foes last season, so it would be nice if they could come out and set the tone early against the Rockets, even if it is just the preseason.

Points of Grizzly Emphasis
  • Slow down James Harden. The Rockets have a powerful offense, but it often feels that this offense goes as Harden goes. If he has a big game, the rest of Houston's offense might just fall into place. Tony Allen is likely to find himself matched up against Harden most of the night. (Read: for as long as both teams decide to play the starters)
  • Will Jon Leuer's hot start in the Grizzlies first preseason game carry over? Leuer had a nice offensive showing against the Bucks, and although it's preseason, he could go a long way towards establishing himself in the rotation with good performances before the regular season begins.
  • Continue to get Marc Gasol a lot of shots. Everyone's interested to see if he's ready to take over more games this season, and the time to start is now. In last night's game, Big Spain was 3-8 from the field with 7 points and 7 rebounds. He wasn't great, but it certainly seemed like he was trying to be more aggressive. That's a huge plus for the Grizzlies.
  • Don't allow the Rockets to get out in the open court. The Rockets are a team that likes to get out and run, and after adding Trevor Ariza this offseason, they are set to be even better in transition. Ariza was lights out on three-pointers in transition last season, and it will be interesting to see how he replaces Chandler Parsons in the lineup.
  • Can the Rookies play well enough to earn consistent regular season court time? Jordan Adams and Jarnell Stokes were both poor offensively against the Bucks, but bumps in the road are to be expected.
  • Will Vince Carter get any run this preseason? He had surgery during the offseason, and the Grizzlies might be holding him out to allow for maximum recovery/rest time. There's really no need to put any more tread than necessary on the tires of the thirty-seven-year-old.
Why you should watch this game
Basketball is back, and you know you were oh so sad that you couldn't watch the Grizzlies play in Milwaukee last night. The Rockets will be a really fun team this season, and these two teams could end up facing each other in the playoffs. Tune in, and join us on the game thread!