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Addition by Subtraction

Posted by Brian Mulligan on 1/31/2011 9:37:30 AM

Some teams in the NBA get better when they lose a piece of their squad especially when that guy brings drama to the locker room every single day.

Enter O.J. Mayo, who was just suspended for 10 games without pay by the league for a positive drug test. His absence from the Memphis Grizzlies facility is a great case of addition by subtraction.

A former USC Trojan, Mayo is no stranger to controversy. He left his college in a cloud and the school ended up being penalized for his poor judgment when he allegedly accepted cash and gifts.

The drug he tested for is called dehydroepiandrosterone and it will cost him over $400,000 to sit out the games. The drug is believed by some to help build muscle mass and although it is sold over the counter in the states, it is banned in the Olympics, the NFL and obviously the NBA.

The drug is typically marketed to middle age or older men.

This is the same drug that in the past put the Los Angeles Dodgers Manny Ramirez on the pine for an extended vacation.

How will this affect the Grizzlies and those that bet on their games? It could very well help them big time in the long run but more about the stats later.

Mayo was picked number 3 overall in 2008 and he started the season this year in the starting line-up. He lost his job as a starter after just 15 games and the team has thrived with him as a viewer.

In a terrible twist of fate, just this last Saturday, Memphis played at home against Washington and the already scheduled O.J. Mayo bobble head night was held. What a joke.

Mayo has been the subject of trade rumors for a while now and in a well publicized fiasco, he was involved with teammate Tony Allen early in the year in a fist fight while in flight.

In Mayo’s last appearance before the suspension he was a total non-factor going 0 for 4 from the floor.

Don’t be shocked if this is the beginning of the end for Mayo in a Memphis uniform. He has talent, but has not developed it like the guy he was traded for Kevin Love and he is pretty much one-dimensional and just an offensive threat.

Ironically, the guy who will benefit the most from the suspension is the guy he lost the plane fight to. Tony Allen came in as a reserved in the game Friday for the Griz and had a very good game in just 20 minutes.

He put up 8 points, had 6 boards, 2 assists, 2 steals and 3 blocks. That’s a career for some guys.

Allen is a tough guy who learned how to work and win when he was with the Boston Celtics. In the Friday game, Memphis came from over 20 points down to secure the victory.

Memphis has been very good value this year against the spread and it may only get better with Mayo gone.

They were a plus 10 against the spread with a tie after 47 games and were equally effective home and away covering 5 more on the road and going 12-7-1 against the number on Beale Street.

This league is all about opportunity and bettors can expect Tony Allen to step up and take advantage of his day in the sun.

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