Grizzlies' owner defends commitment to win, says Memphis can do 'serious damage' in playoffs

The Grizzlies' new owner is defending the trade of his team's leading scorer and other moves to dump salary, saying he believes they can do some "serious damage" in the playoffs with the changes.

Robert Pera took part in a web chat Friday with Memphis' season ticket holders along with chief executive officer Jason Levien, and Pera's first question was about whether the new ownership group has the financial ability to run the team.

Pera hadn't spoken publicly since taking over the team Nov. 5. He wrote that NBA teams have won titles with superstars and that history shows teams can win without a superstar.

The Grizzlies traded three players and a first-round draft pick to Cleveland last week and sent Rudy Gay to Toronto in a three-team trade Wednesday.