Ultimate Standings: Memphis Grizzlies roar to second in franchise rankings

Nelson Chenault/USA TODAY Sports

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Memphis Grizzlies

Overall: 2
Title track: 64
Ownership: 13
Coaching: 52
Players: 4
Fan relations: 7
Affordability: 1
Stadium experience: 6
Bang for the buck: 3
Change from last year: +2

The Grizzlies have been at the top of our franchise leaderboard for so long that they've started redecorating. They pulled the top spot in 2013, dipped ever so slightly to No. 4 last year and rebounded to runner-up position in 2015, sealing the deal. The Grizz just aren't going anywhere. Not in our franchise rankings and not in the standings that, you know, count (five straight playoff appearances).

What's good

The team's Beale Street location -- one of the most vibrant ZIP codes in America -- combined with a front office that has the fans' best interests at heart creates some sweet, sweet music deep in the heart of Memphis. Despite having one of the best products in the NBA, fans pay for the third-cheapest stubs in the league ($31.48) and rank No. 1 in affordability for the second straight year. (Just compare that with other Western playoff teams: Trail Blazers, $52.90; Warriors, $47.38; Clippers, $78.43.) Oh, and that on-court product? Marc Gasol is locked up for five years after signing his $110 million deal in July.

What's bad

One last hurdle to being truly elite escapes these Grizzlies, and that's the team's bid for a championship. Memphis ranks top 15 in ownership, players, fan relations, affordability, stadium experience and bang for the buck ... but remains a decidedly mediocre No. 64 in title track. And unfortunately for fans, the Grizzlies' collapse after taking a 2-1 series lead over the Warriors in May isn't inspiring much confidence.

What's new

Since owner Robert Pera took over in 2012, it's been nothing but smoked ribs smothered in gravy for Memphis fans. Under Pera's stewardship, the Grizzlies have posted the three winningest seasons in team history, amassing more playoff triumphs than in the 17 previous years combined. The fruits of that success are finally taking shape in fans' evaluation of the suits in the front office, cracking a top-15 ranking in ownership after landing at No. 32, No. 30 and No. 55 in the three previous years.

Next: Oklahoma City Thunder | Full rankings