By: Darrell Castle

Every afternoon at the Castle household, my wife and I partake in “James Hour.” This “James Hour” (typically longer than an hour) is a time of fellowship with friends and family while indulging in some cheese, sausage and drinks. Great conversations always arise from this time, and I want to share some of the conversation with you. That’s why you can expect a weekly “James Hour Conversation” post in which I discuss some hot-button issues in the community and nation. Please take this opportunity to comment back your thoughts on the discussions.

I was in Las Vegas yesterday for a mass torts conference, but back in Memphis, something great was happening. Basketball was making its introduction for the upcoming season.

Memphis Tigers

The Memphis Tigers began their first practice yesterday. 

I’m intrigued by this season because it’s almost an entirely-new era of Tigers basketball than we’ve been accustomed to these past four seasons. The four experienced guards are gone and the most experienced players on the team are big men. This means Memphis should look to play inside-out this season, which is new.

If you know me at all, then you know I’m a big critic of Josh Pastner. I like Josh and think he’s a great person, but I’m ready to see him win. I hope to see him take that next step this season with some new assistant coaches under his wing.

Will Josh improve his coaching abilities this season? Will the Tigers make the tournament again? If they make the tournament, can they make it past the first weekend?

These questions will begin to be answered soon!

Memphis Grizzlies

The Grizzlies played their first preseason game lastnight against the Milwaukee Bucks. 

The score is a little depressing until you realize it’s preseason and you read that the Grizzlies rookies and training camp invites played the entire fourth quarter against the Bucks’ starters. In fact, the Grizzlies starting lineup didn’t play the entire second half.

The defense looked good, and although Vince Carter didn’t play while he’s recovering after offseason surgery, he was sitting on the bench by Coach Dave Joerger acting as an assistant coach for the entire game, and that’s what you want from your veteran when he’s not in the game.

Can the Grizz win more than 50 games this season? Can they make another appearance in the Western Conference Finals? Will they even make the playoffs?

Let’s wait and see!