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Grizzlies believe Conley finally has solid backup

Associated Press Modified: October 3, 2012 at 3:47 pm •  Published: October 3, 2012

Conley said all the failures to find someone to reliably back him up was frustrating at times.

"You felt like you found the right person, they would play so well for such a short period of time," Conley said. "However long it was, it never seemed to work out. It's almost like when are we going to find this right key guy? It was frustrating to not know who's going to back you up, to have a solidified position back there."

On the other hand, Conley also believes the extra work made him a better player.

"I got a lot of experience, a lot of experience you can only learn by playing, so all those minutes helped me regardless of how tired or how beat up I was at the end of the season," Conley said.

Bayless has played with Portland, New Orleans and Toronto. He averaged a career-high 11.4 points in 31 games with Toronto last season, and he handed out an average 3.8 assists too. He sees an opportunity in Memphis and is ready to play on the floor with Conley or without as needed. Bayless hadn't heard of the Grizzlies' history searching for a backup point guard.

"Mike's done a great job," Bayless said. "It's kind of been a situation where Mike's been so good it's tough for other people to get minutes. I'm going to try to take some of the wear and tear off his body and also help him when we're playing at the same time."

Hollins also has guard Josh Selby back after a quiet rookie season, though the coach said he sees him strictly as a shooting guard. Hollins plans to use Bayless and Wroten at both guard spots as he experiments during training camp.

Either way, the 24-year-old Conley knows he'll be getting some much-needed rest this season.

"I'm getting old man," Conley said with a smile.


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