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Grizzlies Insider: There were always going to be bumps in the road
 
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Memphis Grizzlies center Jonas Valanciunas (top) can not hang onto a rebound while guarded by Brooklyn Nets defender Jeff Green (bottom) during action on Friday, January 8, 2021. (Mark Weber/The Daily Memphian)
 

Memphis Grizzlies center Jonas Valanciunas (top) can not hang onto a rebound while guarded by Brooklyn Nets defender Jeff Green (bottom) during action on Friday, January 8, 2021. (Mark Weber/The Daily Memphian)

Welcome back to your Grizzlies Insider, where we deliver the latest NBA news and analysis straight from Daily Memphian staffers Drew Hill, Chris Herrington and Geoff Calkins right to your inbox. 

There were always going to be bumps in the road.

When the NBA decided to start its season in late December, the league knew that coronavirus protocols presented a serious challenge to playing games. Some might be postponed. Some might be canceled.

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So when Grizzlies role player De’Anthony Melton missed the team’s road trip due to “health and safety protocols,” it wasn’t exactly surprising. He is hardly the only player to miss games for that reason — superstar Kevin Durant missed a game against Memphis for that reason last week.

But it is a little bit more concerning when players are pulled mid-game. It happened after 76ers guard Seth Curry tested positive and was put in isolation straight from the bench, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski .

It happened again when Jonas Valanciunas left the game Friday night. That time, Valanciunas didn’t test positive.

“False alarm,” the big man tweeted Sunday.

As the number of players out due to protocols increases, let’s hope that’s often the case.

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More from your Insider:


Herrington: Grizzlies evaluate roster, stay alive while awaiting stars’ return

Chris Herrington: The absence of Grizzlies’ stars provides a chance to observe the trends of some players who are in outsized roles.

Grizzlies hold off Nets for first home win of the season

Jonas Valanciunas left before halftime for “health and safety protocols”; sources say it was not a positive COVID-19 test. 

For rookie Xavier Tillman Sr., it’s the little things

Xavier Tillman Sr. will have an expanded role to fill if Jonas Valanciunas misses time due to health and safety protocols. 

Grizzlies, Cavaliers kneel in unity prior to Thursday’s tipoff

Tyus Jones said it was challenging for the Grizzlies to focus on basketball after what happened at the U.S. Capitol the day before.

Grizzlies’ turnovers costly in close loss to Cavaliers

The Cavaliers took advantage of Grizzlies miscues to win a close game between two depleted teams Thursday night.

 
 
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