Grizzlies beat Pistons in home opener - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Grizzlies beat Pistons in home opener

(WMC-TV) - The Memphis Grizzlies beat the Detroit Pistons 111 to 108 in their home opener at FedExForum.

The Memphis Grizzlies Basketball Season is officially underway after Friday's game. Not only are the Grizz coming off of their best season ever after making it to the Western Conference Finals, but ESPN identified the team as the best sports franchise in North America.

One of reasons for that high honor was the likeability of the players. And according to those players, they have a lot of love for Memphis, too!

"I take a lot of pride in that on representing Memphis," said Marc Gasol. "You know, when I got international playing in Slovenia or Lithuania or in the Olympics, I am a Memphis Grizzlies player."

The website Choose901.com spoke with players to find out what they love about the Bluff City.

"It's an honor to be a part of city that you see improving," said Mike Conley. "A team that you see improving and being right at the foundation of that."

"To see them Grizzly crazy, you know they've always had a passion for basketball. That's what made the University of Memphis basketball really good and what made Memphis Grizzlies basketball really good," agreed Mike Miller.

NBA players make millions. They can live anywhere they want, but in the last few years, many of the Grizzlies players have gotten married and are buying homes in Memphis area.

"The city embraces hard work. I love the southern hospitality and I can't say that I have witnessed that in any other places," said Tony Allen.

The franchise is trying to build off its best season in history and an incredible off season.

"This is a very genuine feeling here that you get from everybody. It's been an unbelievable experience from the places I got to eat to places I hang out at, everybody has been great to me," said Jerryd Bayless.

You can see all of the hard work grit and grind action Friday night and all season long at FedExForum.

Copyright 2013 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

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