Dillon Brooks’ departure from the Memphis Grizzlies this offseason has proven to be one of the summer’s more interesting storylines.
Brooks, undeniably a polarizing personality, was widely regarded as a key part of the Grizzlies’ identity over the past year.
Somewhere along the way, right around their disastrous first round performance against the Los Angeles Lakers in this year’s playoffs, Brooks seemed to fall out of favor with everyone.
That ultimately culminated in Memphis essentially telling him he wasn’t welcome back in 2023-24 and him finding a place with the Houston Rockets.
The Rockets gave Brooks a four-year, $80 million contract.
This week, NBA insider Tim MacMahon offered some clarity on what happened between Brooks and the Grizzlies and why that relationship ultimately fell apart.
“I think the reasons the Grizzlies were ready to move on from him are misunderstood,” MacMahon said on Zach Lowe’s ‘Lowe Post’ podcast.
“The nonsense was kind of like at a point where culturally it was time. That was not the primary reason.
“The primary reason the Grizzlies were trying to replace Dillon Brooks for a full two years, repeatedly going after players that would have replaced him in the trade market — and he probably would have been sent out — was because of the shot selection issue. Dillon did not want to be a fourth or fifth offensive weapon.”
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Obviously Brooks got himself into some trouble from time to time, but he also averaged nearly 15 points per game during his time in Memphis. Simultaneously, he was arguably the squad’s second-best all-around defensive player.
He did what was asked of him.
Will Brooks ultimately be able to make it work in Houston and show the Grizzlies they were wrong to cut ties with him as abruptly as they did? One way or another, an answer will emerge next season.