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SB Nation Reacts Survey: Are the Memphis Grizzlies legitimate contenders?

The playoffs begin Saturday for the Grizzlies. When will they end?

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NBA: New Orleans Pelicans at Memphis Grizzlies Christine Tannous-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NBA. Each week we ask questions of the most plugged-in Memphis Grizzlies fans and fans across the country. Sign up here to join Reacts.

Your Memphis Grizzlies are on the cusp of greatness. The youngest team to ever secure a 2 seed in the NBA Playoffs appears ready to make a real push to become the youngest team to ever win the NBA Finals (move aside, Lionel Hollins Portland Trail Blazers). They are legitimately 10 men deep, with the 10th man being a player like Ziaire Williams, John Konchar, or Xavier Tillman Sr. The team has few weaknesses, and many strengths - they led the NBA in rebounding, fast break scoring, steals, blocks, and broke multiple records both individually as a team on their way to tying the franchise best 56 wins in the regular season. Memphis won their first division title, and seem primed to make a run at a conference championship final appearance as well.

And yet, the good folks at DraftKings appear to disagree with the appearance of the Grizzlies as a championship contender. Memphis is slotted as the 7th favorite to win the Finals (+1300), and 3rd in the West behind not only the Suns (+255, the understandable favorite entering the playoffs), but also the Warriors (+850). In fact, the Warriors are slotted at +400 to win the West in particular and the Grizzlies are +500. Perhaps the sharks out in Vegas see the Grizzlies half court offense (22nd in points per play in the half court, per Cleaning the Glass) and get concerned. Maybe the youth of Memphis is reason to pause - after all, no team in a decade has combined winning with lack of veteran experience like the Grizzlies. The team also finished 28th in free throw percentage and 17th in three point percentage, thanks in large part to Desmond Bane (43.6% on almost 7 attempts per game). While the weaknesses are few, they do exist - and if opponents can prevent the Grizzlies from running and gunning while also keeping them off the offensive boards for extra possessions, Memphis may be in for a tough first round series, much less a title run.

So what say you? The first round series is set. Will the Grizzlies, the undisputed favorite in that best of seven set, be able to rise to expectations for the first time and make a run reminiscent of Memphis Mays from back in the days? Or is this team simply too far ahead of schedule and likely to flame out sooner than perhaps their regular season success says they should?

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