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NBA GM Survey: Marc Gasol the best, Tony Allen the toughest, Defense still Grizzlies calling card

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Check out where the Grizzlies stand in the 2015 NBA GM Survey.

Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

The journey of the once-maligned Memphis Grizzlies to perennial playoff stature has helped shine some light onto their area of the NBA stage. The Grizzlies make several appearances in the 2015 NBA GM Survey results, enough to surely make a few people down at FedexForum blush like a rose.

Here are the Grizzlies highlights:

I'm guessing that says there are a handful of GM's in the league who think the Grizzlies are a top 4 team in the West.

But it gets much better!

> Who is the best point guard in the NBA?
1. Stephen Curry, Golden State -- 55.2%
2. Chris Paul, L.A. Clippers -- 24.1%
3. Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City -- 17.2%
4. Mike Conley, Memphis -- 3.4%
Last year: Chris Paul -- 71.4%

Boom. Mike Conley is a top 4 point guard in the NBA according to how I choose to interpret this. And then there's this...

> Which player is most likely to have a breakout season in 2015-16?
1. Andrew Wiggins, Minnesota -- 17.2%
2. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee -- 13.8%
3. Bradley Beal, Washington -- 10.3%
Jabari Parker, Milwaukee -- 10.3%
5. Anthony Davis, New Orleans -- 6.9%
Also receiving votes: Harrison Barnes, Golden State; Mike Conley, Memphis; Andre Drummond, Detroit; Danilo Gallinari, Denver; Rudy Gobert, Utah; Tobias Harris, Orlando; Reggie Jackson, Detroit; Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio; C.J. McCollum, Portland; Shabazz Muhammed, Minnesota; Victor Oladipo, Orlando; Otto Porter, Washington; Marcus Smart, Boston
Last year: Anthony Davis -- 29.6%

So there are apparently some who think Mike hasn't reached his ceiling just yet!

His buddy did pretty well too.

Who is the best center in the NBA?
1. Marc Gasol, Memphis -- 65.5%
2. DeMarcus Cousins, Sacramento -- 13.8%
3. Anthony Davis, New Orleans -- 6.9%
Tim Duncan, San Antonio -- 6.9%
DeAndre Jordan, L.A. Clippers -- 6.9%
Last year: Dwight Howard -- 42.9%

> Who is the best international player in the NBA?
1. Marc Gasol, Memphis -- 62.1%
2. Pau Gasol, Chicago -- 17.2%
3. Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas -- 10.3%
4. Tony Parker, San Antonio -- 6.9%
5. Goran Dragic, Miami -- 3.4%
Last year: Dirk Nowitzki -- 53.6%

Shazam. And it's not even close. Marc Gasol is the best.

Here's a more subtle nod:

> What was the most underrated player acquisition?
1. Ty Lawson, Houston -- 10.3%
Paul Pierce, L.A. Clippers -- 10.3%
David West, San Antonio -- 10.3%
4. Amir Johnson, Boston -- 6.9%
David Lee, Boston -- 6.9%
Greg Monroe, Milwaukee -- 6.9%
Also receiving votes: Al-Farouq Aminu, Portland; Nicolas Batum, Charlotte; Marco Belinelli, Sacramento; DeMarre Carroll, Toronto; Tyson Chandler, Phoenix; Roy Hibbert, L.A. Lakers; Reggie Jackson, Detroit; Brandon Knight, Phoenix; Robin Lopez, New York; Tiago Splitter, Atlanta; Amar'e Stoudemire, Miami; Jason Thompson, Golden State; Marcus Thornton, Houston; Brandan Wright, Memphis
Last year: Tyson Chandler -- 17.9%

I've heard many people tip their cap to the Brandan Wright signing. Not only was he a great deal, he provides a dynamic the Grizzlies have rarely had over the past 5 years.

DEFENSE (CLAP CLAP) DEFENSE (CLAP CLAP)

To no surprise, the Grizzlies make the marquee in all the defensive categories.

> Who is the best defensive player in the NBA?
1. Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio -- 27.6%
2. Anthony Davis, New Orleans -- 17.2%
3. LeBron James, Cleveland -- 13.8%
4. Tony Allen, Memphis -- 10.3%
5. Draymond Green, Golden State -- 6.9%
DeAndre Jordan, L.A. Clippers -- 6.9%
Also receiving votes: Tim Duncan, San Antonio; Marc Gasol, Memphis; Rudy Gobert, Utah; Serge Ibaka, Oklahoma City; Andre Iguodala, Golden State
Last year: Joakim Noah -- 35.7%

> Who is the best perimeter defender in the NBA?
1. Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio -- 44.8%
2. Tony Allen, Memphis -- 17.2%
3. Jimmy Butler, Chicago -- 10.3%
LeBron James, Cleveland -- 10.3%
Also receiving votes: DeMarre Carroll, Toronto; Andre Iguodala, Golden State; Chris Paul, L.A. Clippers; Klay Thompson, Golden State; Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City
Last year: LeBron James -- 25.0 %

> Who is the best interior defender in the NBA?
1. Marc Gasol, Memphis -- 27.6%
2. Anthony Davis, New Orleans -- 17.2%
DeAndre Jordan, L.A. Clippers -- 17.2%
4. Rudy Gobert, Utah -- 10.3%
5. Dwight Howard, Houston -- 6.9%
Serge Ibaka, Oklahoma City -- 6.9%
Also receiving votes: Tim Duncan, San Antonio; Roy Hibbert, L.A. Lakers; Timofey Mozgov, Cleveland; Joakim Noah, Chicago
Last year: Joakim Noah -- 39.3%

> Which is the best defensive team in the NBA?
1. Golden State -- 58.6%
2. Memphis -- 34.5%
Also receiving votes: Chicago, Cleveland
Last year: Chicago -- 85.7%

> Which head coach has the best defensive schemes?
1. Gregg Popovich, San Antonio -- 31.0%
2. Dave Joerger, Memphis -- 27.6%
3. Steve Kerr, Golden State -- 13.8%
4. Steve Clifford, Charlotte -- 6.9%
Jason Kidd, Milwaukee -- 6.9%
Also receiving votes: Brad Stevens, Boston; Tom Thibodeau; Stan Van Gundy, Detroit; Frank Vogel, Indiana
Last year: Tom Thibodeau -- 92.9%

I'm actually glad the Grizzlies aren't #1 across the board. I'm sure Tony Allen will derive some motivation from being 2nd and 4th in his categories. Hat tip to Dave Joerger for garnering over 1/4th of the vote for defensive scheme. He's knocking on Pop's door, in fact.

One more for "coaching":

> Which active player will make the best head coach someday?
1. Chris Paul, L.A. Clippers -- 25.0%
2. Mike Conley, Memphis -- 14.3%
3. Steve Blake, Detroit -- 12.5%
4. Andre Miller, Minnesota -- 7.1%
5. Jarrett Jack, Brooklyn -- 5.4%
Also receiving votes: Caron Butler, Sacramento; Jared Dudley, Washington; Willie Green; Kirk Hinrich, Chicago; Jameer Nelson, Denver; Pablo Prigioni, L.A. Clippers; J.J. Redick, L.A. Clippers; Luis Scola, Toronto; Garrett Temple, Washington; David West, San Antonio
Last year: Chris Paul -- 24.0%

You know who I thought would be on here with at least a vote or two? Vince Carter. All that guy does right now is coach up young Grizzlies.

FIRST TEAM ALL-IMPACT

> What bench player makes the biggest impact when he enters the game?
1. Andre Iguodala, Golden State -- 37.9%
2. Isaiah Thomas, Boston -- 17.2%
3. Jamal Crawford, L.A. Clippers -- 10.3%
4. Tony Allen, Memphis -- 6.9%
Also receiving votes: Marco Belinelli, Sacramento; Corey Brewer, Houston; Taj Gibson, Chicago; Manu Ginobili, San Antonio; Draymond Green, Golden State; Nikola Mirotic, Chicago; Tristan Thompson; Lou Williams, L.A. Lakers
Last year: N/A

WTG Tony! If I were an NBA player, I think I might take most pride in showing up on this list.

And finally:

> Who is the toughest player in the NBA?
1. Tony Allen, Memphis -- 20.7%
2. Draymond Green, Golden State -- 17.2%
3. Kobe Bryant, L.A. Lakers -- 6.9%
Jimmy Butler, Chicago -- 6.9%
Zach Randolph, Memphis -- 6.9%
Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City -- 6.9%
Also receiving votes: Andrew Bogut, Golden State; Tim Duncan, San Antonio; Manu Ginobili, San Antonio; LeBron James, Cleveland; Robin Lopez, New York; Wesley Matthews, Dallas; Joakim Noah, Chicago; Zaza Pachulia, Dallas; Chris Paul, L.A. Clippers; David West, San Antonio
Last year: Tony Allen -- 25.9%

Uh oh, Tony. You dropped 5% from last year. Draymond's sneaking up on you bro! Now if you'll excuse me.... HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAH Ginobili? Chris Paul? Should we maybe define "tough" before next year's survey?

You can look through the entire results over here.

What do you all think? Any other categories you think the Grizzlies should have shown up in?