Former 4th overall pick Josh Jackson, who the Grizzlies acquired via trade this offseason, will start the season on assignment with the Memphis Hustle according to Grind City Media’s Michael Wallace.
Jackson has had a tumultuous start to his NBA career, averaging 12.3 points, 4.5 rebounds and 1.9 assists in his two seasons in Phoenix. Although the stats aren’t great for a 4th overall pick, the real concerns have come from Jackson’s behavior off the court.
Jackson already had some red flags coming out of college, where he was involved in a vandalism case at Kansas where he allegedly damaged the car of McKenzie Calvert, a Kansas women’s basketball player, and verbally threatened her outside of a bar in Lawrence, KS back in 2017. In May of 2019, Jackson was arrested in Miami at a concert for attempting to enter the VIP entrance several times and then attempting to evade police while being arrested. Also in May, Jackson was accused of smoking marijuana around his five-month-old daughter.
The Grizzlies are seemingly making Jackson prove himself on and off the court in the G League with the Hustle before giving him a chance with the NBA squad. According to Michael Wallace, the Grizzlies and Jackson’s representatives have mutually agreed to an undisclosed set of guidelines to get Jackson’s reputation and career back on track.
Jackson is due to make $7 million this season with a team option of nearly $9 million for the 2020-2021 season. The Grizzlies have a handful of options ahead of Jackson currently at Jackson’s small forward position, so playing for the Hustle will allow him to prove his worth instead of sitting on the end of the bench for the Grizzlies. The Memphis Hustle season tips off at 7 PM CT on Friday November 8th at the Landers Center down in Southaven, MS.
Standing at 6’8”, Jackson has the size and skill to be a solid foundational piece alongside Ja Morant and Jaren Jackson Jr., if he can figure things out. The Grizzlies have had success turning around troubled players careers, most notably with Grizzlies legend Zach Randolph.
Stick with GBB for further updates on the Grizzlies ahead of next week's training camp.
Stats provided by https://www.basketball-reference.com/