In his second season in the NBA, Jaren Jackson Jr. is stepping up for the Grizzlies and is becoming the leader Memphis needs in 2019.
Jaren Jackson Jr. is one of the best young players on the Grizzlies and showed a lot of potential both on the court and in the locker room last season.
Chris Harrington of The Daily Memphian outlined Jackson stepping up and becoming a leader in his recent piece “10 takes on the post-draft Grizzlies.”
"“People around the team say that Jackson’s been around FedExForum a lot this summer, Harrington said. The Grizzlies are Jaren Jackson Jr.’s team now, and he’s embraced it.”"
Jackson took over after Marc Gasol was traded to the Raptors and was an integral part of the team.
Now with Mike Conley also gone the Grizzlies will desperately need someone to step up and become the leader in the locker room. Most people expect Ja Morant to fill in this role, but it might be difficult for him to fill that role as a rookie.
Jackson is a player that just about everyone in Memphis loves. It’s hard to find someone say a bad thing about him, and that has to translate in the locker room.
He has also been reaching out to Morant before he was even drafted to the Grizzlies in attempts to take him under his wing before he got to Memphis.
You don’t see that too often, but with social media being so prevalent it will start happening more frequently every year, especially when a team openly knows who they’re drafting.
It is unique to see a second-year player like Jackson step up and reach out to a player that is about to head to Memphis.
Jackson has also been working on becoming the leader on the court as well. He has reportedly been at FedEx Forum a lot most likely working on his game. This stands out to other players regardless of how old they are.
He averaged 13.8 points per game last season in 58 games. If the Grizzlies expect to compete, they’re going to need Jackson to be healthy and ready to carry the team throughout the season.
Jackson and Morant have the potential to become one of the best duos in the NBA over the next few years if they play their cards right.
If Jackson can prove he has what it takes to be a leader, his teammates will welcome him with open arms as he transitions into that role.