The Memphis Grizzlies released some good news on the injury front Monday afternoon. Jaren Jackson Jr. (knee) and Justise Winslow (back) are likely to return to the lineup within a week. Brandon Clarke (quad) is expected to be back at some point this season.
Let’s start with JJJ, who has been sidelined since Feb. 21 due to a knee injury. The Grizz have been pretty thin in the front court without Jackson’s size and will welcome the big man back for the playoff push. Memphis has a 4.0 game lead on the Pelicans and Kings for the No. 8 seed in the west. Jackson’s return would mean fewer rebounds and touches for Jonas Valanciunas, but the two have been staples in the Grizzlies front court all season.
Winslow hasn’t made his debut for the Grizzlies since being acquired in a trade with the Heat before the deadline. Winslow has only played in one game since Dec. 4 while dealing with multiple injuries. Winslow would add a much-needed element on the wing for the Grizzlies, adding a versatile playmaker who can play multiple positions.
Clarke has had an impressive rookie season, averaging 12.0 points and 5.8 rebounds over 21.7 minutes per game in 50 appearances. He’s shooting 62.3% from the floor, which is pretty great for a first-year forward. Getting all three players back would help Memphis secure a playoff spot and could help Ja Morant run away with Rookie of the Year over Zion Williamson again.