Josh Jackson is locked in and knows his role with the Memphis Grizzlies.
The Phoenix Suns‘ fourth overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft out of Kansas, Jackson is curently averaging 8.4 points and 4 rebounds for a young and talent-filled Memphis team that counts potential NBA Rookie of the Year Ja Morant and Jaren Jackson Jr. as their stars.
Jackson was traded to the Memphis Grizzlies in July 2019 and he was assigned to the Grizzlies’ Memphis Hustle, their G League affiliate.
In 26 games, Jackson posted 20.3 points, 7.5 rebounds, 4.3 assists, 1.4 blocks and 1.3 steals per game and was named Midseason All-NBA G League for the Western Conference.
The Grizzlies called him up from the G League and he’s been a fixture in Memphis’ locker room. “He’s just continuing to be active defensively,” Grizzlies head coach Taylor Jenkins said recently.
“He was aggressive and he was kind of part of that run where we were playing great defensively, getting out and running. He picked his spots to attack in transition, and shooting the three with confidence was another great step in the right direction for him where he’s just playing the right way on both sides.”
I caught up with Josh Jackson and he shared his views on his role with the Grizzlies, the makeup of the team and what it’s like playing with his exciting team.
Check out our Q&A below:
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: You’re playing on a team that is in a small market and literally has a chance to make it to the playoffs. How cool is it to see young guys like yourself make it happen?
Josh Jackson: It’s amazing, you know. I feel like that we all come from different backgrounds but we all have a lot in common. One being young and hungry. Right now we got the eighth seed and right now we’re trying to keep that and keep pushing. If the season was to end right now, everybody knows who we would be playing right now, we would be playing the Lakers in the first round and I think that right there just speaks volumes to like, who we are as a team. Just being hungry, just being underdogs and just wanting to come out and show everybody that we can compete with the best and that’s what we’re trying to do that tonight
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: You mentioned the Lakers. When I look at the Lakers, there are guys that are on that team have something to prove and are redeeming themselves. You look at Dwight [Howard] he went through some personal things but at the same time he’s in the right position. You look at Danny Green, looking to repeat as a champion with LeBron James. You see LeBron coming back from injury. Comparatively you look at yourself, you’re rebranding and you’re rebuilding. How much of a good fit is this for you in Memphis?
Josh Jackson: It’s really important. You know at this point of my career I’ve learned so much but one of the most important things that I’ve learned is to you just gotta be yourself and be yourself all the time. You can’t let this league change you and you can’t let everybody else around you change you so that’s all I’m trying to do. It doesn’t matter who I play, how good they are, how big the name is, like I’ll always be me and I just try to come out and represent my family and my team.
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: What’s the best piece of advice that you have gotten since you come to Memphis?
Josh Jackson: Best piece of advice? Best piece of advice since that I have gotten since I been here is….I’ve gotten a lot of good advice since I been here actually. The first thing that comes to mind is just to work hard and never think your hard work goes unnoticed. I feel like especially on the Grizzlies, hard work is DEFINITELY repaid. You definitely get rewarded for working hard here. Being in the gym extra hours, staying after practice shooting extra shots, the team definitely takes notice to stuff like that. So working hard was probably the best advice