Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Grizzlies' Mayo out of starting lineup
MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- O.J. Mayo was dropped from the Memphis Grizzlies' starting lineup against Detroit on Wednesday night, the second straight game the guard has opened on the bench.
After starting his first 177 games in the NBA, Mayo was held out of the starting lineup Saturday night in the Grizzlies' victory over the Miami Heat because he was late for the team's shootaround that day.
Rookie guard Xavier Henry started in Mayo's place again against Detroit.
Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins said he was looking for more offensive punch from his second unit.
"I've been thinking about it since before training camp. 'How we could make our team better? And how we could balance our lineup?'" Hollins said. "I just felt like we weren't getting anybody on the bench who was a true, pure scorer."
Mayo, averaging 13.6 points, was 2 for 18 from the field in the last two games.
"I'm not happy," Mayo said, "but at the same time, if this is what's best for the team, I'm all for it. If it betters our team situation, I've got to deal with it."
Hollins said the disciplinary action involving Mayo on Saturday and the shooting slump were factors in the situation because he was able to see how the change worked Saturday.
The coach acknowledged that some would see the switch as a demotion for Mayo.
"Unfortunately, a lot of people will think that," Hollins said. "But to be perfectly honest, it's not the case. It's always difficult when you make these types of decisions because everybody is reading into it more than what they should."
Henry, a rookie from Kansas, is averaging 5.3 points. He was 1 of 9 from the field and scored six points in 26 minutes against the Heat.
"It was just out of nowhere," Henry said. "At first I was [surprised], then I just eased into it."