The Memphis Grizzlies are in disarray and are having big problems both on and off the court this season.
Head coach David Fizdale was fired earlier this week after the team went on a nine-game losing streak.
His decision to bench star player Marc Gasol for the entire fourth quarter in a loss to the Brooklyn Nets proved to be the final straw for him.
Following his firing, news quickly emerged of a rift between the pair and interesting details of their relationship.
General manager Chris Wallace confirmed in a press conference that there was "tension" between the two and it has led many to believe that it was one of the main factors behind the franchise's surprise decision to part ways with him.
When an organization has to choose between its head coach and star player, there's only usually one winner.
Point guard Mike Conley shed more light on the problems between Gasol and Fizdale when speaking to the media recently.
When asked by a reporter if he had been a mediator at times in the situation, he replied: “That’s my second job man. I am the mediator for everybody. Part-time psychologist, you can call me.
“I definitely was in the middle of trying to help steer things in the right direction with them.”
Gasol claimed he didn't ask for Fiz to be fired but did admit that "they didn't always see eye-to-eye".
According to Ken Berger of Bleacher Report, a source told him that the Spaniard didn't really have that much respect for his coach.
“Gasol had been chafing for a long time,” a person familiar with the player’s thinking told Bleacher Report. “He had two pretty good coaches in Dave [Joerger] and Lionel [Hollins], and he felt this guy was a little bit of a [phony].”
Even with Fizdale gone, things are not looking much better for the Grizzlies as they suffered a 10th consecutive defeat at the hands of the San Antonio Spurs at home on Friday night with J.B. Bickerstaff in interim charge.
The 95-79 loss is yet another low point for the team this year as they continue to struggle badly on the offensive end.
Things won't get any easier for them either as they travel to face the red-hot Cleveland Cavaliers - who have won 10 straight - on the road on Saturday and it could get even uglier for them.
The Tennessee-based outfit has taken a major step backward this season and some wholesale changes will be needed to return them to a competitive level again.