The Memphis Hustle of the NBA G League continue the early steps of forming this year’s rosters by holding an open tryout for players on Sept. 28. The tryout session again takes place at DeSoto Central High School, 2911 Central Parkway, starting at 10 a.m. and continuing to 1 p.m. Doors will open at 9 a.m. Registration information is available at www.memphishustle.com.
This will be the first year for new Hustle coach Jason March, who takes over for Brad Jones, who is now an assistant coach with the parent Memphis Grizzlies. The Olive Branch resident returns to the Grizzlies’ organization and has also worked in the NBA at Phoenix, Sacramento and had a previous stint in Memphis between 2007-2016.
March held the team’s first open tryout last weekend at Christian Brothers University in Memphis and said he believes this is a great opportunity for players who may have been previously were overlooked by NBA teams.
“I don’t know of another professional sport that gives guys another chance,” March said. “I think that is what it is all about. We get them in here and we give them a chance. We take it very seriously here because it’s worked for us before.”
The Hustle found two players who finished the year on their roster last year, thanks to an open tryout, in Memphis native Nino Johnson and Jay-R Strowbridge, who participated in the tryouts and joined the team for training camp. They later rejoined the team during the season and played key roles in the franchise’s first playoff victory.
March said the tryouts will also show if a player has the basketball intangibles they will look for and if the players can fit the Grizzlies, and Hustle, style of play.
“We have things that we are going to do with the Hustle, but in the end we are going to tie in everything to to coach Jenkins and what he wants to do,” March said. “We’re all one group with the organization.”
For March, it’s good to be back in DeSoto County.
“We love it there, we were there for nine years in our previous stint (working with the Grizzlies), and we love it,” March said.
Bob Bakken is Sports Editor for the DeSoto Times-Tribune.