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Enhancing the Grizzlies Fan Experience

Far-Fetched Yet Fantastic Ideas to Make the Grizzlies Game Night Experience even better.

NBA: Philadelphia 76ers at Memphis Grizzlies Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Site Manager’s Note - This is satirical. Relax.

You have heard it for months now, and it is because it is the absolute truth. With each move they make, the Grizzlies front office seems to make the future of the franchise better and better. From their additions to the roster, the acquisitions of future picks, and creating a coaching staff, this new Grizzlies regime has had one of the best off-seasons in the NBA. However, while the moves have certainly made the future much brighter, there still remains a reality about the present that must be embraced.

For the past two years, the Grizzlies have lost at a level that fans have not seen in over a decade. It has been hard to see, as fans have had much more to endure than embrace. The difference between this season and the last two is that this roster should be more fun to watch and the fans know that the franchise has a goal to become a winner again in the near future. However, the losing will take its toll. As a result, the Grizzlies will need to find ways to ensure the experiences for any fan is amazing.

Completely wiping away the front office personnel after the season was an extreme measure. Hiring a head coach with no previous head coaching experience was a giant risk. So what if the Grizzlies applied that same mentality to their game night promotions? Sure, wrestling nights and Grizz Grandmas and Grandpas offer entertainment. But what if the marketing staff got really crazy and bold? While the risks are obvious, the rewards could be legendary. Here are five ideas that could make the Grizzlies among the best game night experiences in the NBA.


Social Media Showdown and Where Was It Posted?

Obviously, social media is the new environment that sports franchises have had to embrace over the past decade to keep up with the times. Whether it be the franchise itself or their players, fans can now interact with their heroes more than ever before. So why not take advantage of the publicity? Introducing Social Media Showdown.

For every weekend home game, three random fans will be chosen during the first time out. Each fan will make a post through a specific social media outlet, one on Twitter, one on Facebook, and one on Instagram. Whoever gets the most comments and reactions will be declared the winner. The Winner will then participate in the lightning round spectacular, “Where Was it Posted?”

Grizzlies fans everywhere love to post their hot takes on Facebook and Twitter. Therefore, the winner of the Social Media Showdown will be shown five original fan hot takes from Grizzlies history. He or she will guess whether it was posted on Facebook or Twitter. If the winner gets four or more correct, then he or she will win the chance to control the Grizzlies official Twitter account for a future game. An original ideal that celebrates the fans and social media, it guaranteed to go wrong in a heartbeat but will be incredibly entertaining.


Nostalgia Night Skills Competitions

As fans, many of us have day dreamed about the chance to have the skills of our favorite Grizzlies players. The ability to pass like Jason Williams....to shoot the three like Mike Miller...or to dunk like Stromile Swift. Well, the Grizzlies have the power to make that happen with Nostalgia Nights.

At halftime, two random fans are picked. They will then go through a three station obstacle course, with whoever registers the fastest time declared the winner. The first station will be from the top of the arc with a target on the low block. The contestant will receive passes from Jason Williams, and while still looking at Williams, will throw no-look passes until the target is hit. The second Station will be on the other end of the court. The contestant will take turns shooting threes with Mike Miller. Once three threes are made, the fan will then head back down to the opposite end of the court. There, the contestant, from beyond the arc, will have to connect twice with Stromile Swift on an Alley-Oop dunk.

The winner gets an autographed basketball from all three Grizzlies legends, and bragging rights in Grizz Nation. This would be a great way to celebrate some of the most beloved Grizzlies in franchise history, and would be an awesome experience for lifelong Grizzlies fans.


Guarding the Grindhouse

A popular promotion over the past few years has been the barbecue ribs challenges. A pair of local celebrities will try to score a certain number of baskets in a certain time frame against three oversized BBQ ribs. While certainly an original concept, a simple expansion could be added to make this promotion one of the most beloved among Grizzlies fans.

NBA: Memphis Grizzlies at Atlanta Hawks Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The same idea applies, as two fans will have 45 seconds to score multiple baskets on the ribs. If they succeed, then each fan will have a chance to win both the ultimate fan experience. Each contestant will have 30 seconds to go full court for a basket against the Grindfather himself, Tony Allen. If either fan scores, both fans either get to enjoy a future game sitting with Tony or an appearance with him on the Chris Vernon Show. For a man who is a hero to many in Memphis, it will be a chance for Allen to make dreams come true across the city.


Friday Night Finishers

Fan promotions for the Grizzlies simply are not complete without involving wrestling. For many years, the Grizzlies have incorporated one of the city's greatest traditions in its game night entertainment. However, fans themselves have had little interaction with the wrestling festivities. That could change with a new campaign called Friday Night Finishers.

Two of Memphis’s most legendary wrestling personalities are “Psycho” Sid Vicious and Jerry “The King” Lawler. Both Vicious and Lawler had two of the most iconic signature moves in wrestling history, the Jackknife Powerbomb and the diving fist drop, respectively. Well in Friday Night Finishers, during each Friday Home Game, one lucky fan gets the chance to experience those moves first hand. In the Grizz Wrestling ring, Sid can first deliver the Jackknife Powerbomb. Then, game night host Dustin Starr (in place of Lawler due to health concerns) can deliver the Diving Fist Drop. Finally, Grizz himself will land the Grizz Splash from the top turnbuckle. Grizz will then pin the fan. If the fan kicks out before the three count, the survivor will be rewarded with a customized Grizzlies Championship Belt.

This is an awesome way to celebrate the fans and the history of Memphis Wrestling (this is a documented declaration that GBB nor I are to be held liable in the case this original idea happens.)


PERA VS. PETEY THE BEAR

One of the first places any Memphis native will tell a tourist to visit in this great city is the Memphis Zoo. A magnificent place and experience, the Memphis Zoo has been considered one of the best in the country for decades. Of course, it is the only place Grizzlies fans will encounter an actual Grizzly Bear in real life in Memphis.

That is until now.

Following in the fictional yet trailblazing footsteps of player owner Jackie Moon of the Flint Tropics, Grizzlies Owner Robert Pera will fight an actual Grizzly Bear live (due to liability, do not expect GBBLive as a sponsor.) While appearances by Pera are rare, this is a sure fire way to make them memorable. Pera has been a creative source of promotions in the past, offering to play Michael Jordan or Tony Allen one-on-one for charity. Now, Pera will have the ultimate chance to prove his worth to the fans in an event that promotes the Grizzlies perfectly. While things could get gruesome, it will be the best game night experience ever for fans in attendance (Medics being on hand will be the responsibility of the franchise....also, GBB and myself are not to be held liable, as noted, for good reason, here and above.)

The Grizzlies franchise has used creativity and innovation to improve the future outlook of the franchise immensely. Now, they simply need to apply those same traits to their game night promotions. Sure, a few of these may be slightly unrealistic, but the potential memories they will create will be fantastic. With a little courage while completely ignoring common sense, the Memphis Grizzlies could easily create the best game night experience for fans in the NBA.