Only 19 games into the 2017-2018 season and the Memphis Grizzlies have fired head coach David Fizdale.
This firing comes nearly a day after Fizdale benched Marc Gasol for the entire fourth quarter against the Brooklyn Nets, something Gasol criticized his coach for following the game.
It’s not clear whether this was the motivation behind the firing, but the two come very close to each other.
Memphis has fired coach David Fizdale, league sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 27, 2017
The Griz have lost 11 of 13, and there was some friction between Marc Gasol & David Fizdale last night, BUT STILL. Memphis has had a bunch of injuries, and I’ve been impressed over & over with how Fiz connects with his players.
— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) November 27, 2017
While the Grizzlies started their season 7-4, they have dropped eight straight since. In his first year as head coach, Fizdale led the Grizzlies to a pretty successful 43-39 record. This is pretty good, especially for a first year coach.
With that being said, many people are surprised at the firing due to his success in the first year and the situation he has walked into.
The Grizzlies have a lot of potential, but have been plagued with injured which has limited their ceiling.
This is why many are surprised that Fizdale had this short of a leash. He is one of the most respected coaches in the league and has done all that has been asked for him while battling uncontrollable setbacks such as injury.