|Points Per Game||4.9|
|Assists Per Game||2.3|
|3-Point Shooting Percentage||16.70%|
|Player Efficiency Rating||10.6|
|Win Shares Per 48 Minutes||0.5|
Toney Douglas originally signed with the Grizzlies as a free agent on December 5th when Mike Conley went down with his back injury. Douglas was cut once the Grizzlies got healthier on December 15th. When Andrew Harrison struggled, the Grizzlies signed Toney Douglas to a 10-day contract January 30th and eventually signed him to a contract through the end of the season.
Coach Fizdale referred to Douglas as the Grizzlies big mid-season acquisition, along with the improved health of Brandan Wright. Go ahead and look back at the stats. Does that look like a big mid-season acquisition? Definitely not, and that is what led to the Grizzlies cutting Douglas in favor of Wayne Selden Jr. on March 18th. Douglas was brought in to replace a struggling Andrew Harrison in the Grizzlies lineup, but ultimately the team decided Douglas wasn’t enough of an improvement to stunt the growth of Harrison.
It wasn’t a complete struggle for Douglas in a Grizzlies uniform, however. It didn’t always show up in the stats or even in the Grizzlies win-loss record, but Douglas had a Tony Allen-esque effect on the team with his energy even diving into the stands. When the team was in a funk or playing like they didn’t want to be out there, Fizdale would throw Douglas into the fire and his effort would wake the team up. There were a handful of games where Douglas turned a blowout loss to a close loss, or a close win to a blowout win. His energy was infectious, but unfortunately it wasn’t enough to overcome his otherwise bad play.
Although Douglas struggled much of his tenure with the Grizzlies, he did have a big game for the Grizz against the Portland Trail Blazers on December 8th. Douglas chipped in 11 points and 3 assists and was clutch down the stretch.
The Grizzlies overcame an 11 point deficit in the final 5 minutes, and Douglas contributed greatly to that comeback. He assisted on a few clutch baskets and hit 4 free throw’s in the final 20 seconds to lead the Grizzlies to victory.
Ways to Improve:
Douglas needs to have been practicing his jump shot ever since he got cut from the Grizzlies. His jump shot was almost as broken as Andrew Harrison’s was early in the season. Harrison’s jump shot improved, while Douglas’ seemed to get worse. The further Douglas got away from the rim, the worse he shot. He shot 16% from 3 this season. Only Wade Baldwin IV and Wayne Selden shot worse from deep this season on 20 less attempts than Douglas. Douglas is a solid defender and facilitator, but if he has any hope of latching onto another NBA team in the future, he needs to fix his jump shot.
2016-2017 Overall Grade
Like BallFromGrace said in his Andrew Harrison evaluation, players can’t be graded on the same scale. When you’re being praised as a big mid-season acquisition, you’re expected to play much better than Douglas did.
You also have to take into consideration the Grizzlies cut Troy Williams to make room for Toney Douglas. While Douglas got cut nearly 2 months from his first 10 day contract, Williams got picked up by the Houston Rockets and was a solid contributor for them down the stretch. Williams also showed a lot of potential while with the Grizzlies.
The Toney Douglas experience in Memphis was supposed to give the Grizzlies an established veteran point guard who could run the second unit. Unfortunately, the Douglas experience was a total flop. The only thing keeping Douglas from a straight F is his contributions to steady the ship while Conley was out.