Grizzlies Defeat Spurs: Finishing 2014 the Right Way
Last night the Memphis Grizzlies, led by their floor general Mike Conley, posted a 95-87 win against the San Antonio Spurs. The win gave them their first consecutive victories against the Spurs since games 3 and 4 of the 2011 playoffs and put the Grizzlies up one in the series.
Mike Conley was the All-Star of the game. He lead all scorers with 30 points, recognizing that his team needed him offensively. He shot 76.9% on the night, nailing 4 of his 5 three point attempts. To say that Mike Conley was clutch might even be an understatement. Conley scored 16 points in the first quarter alone, scoring over half the team’s 30 1Q points. Conley matched his season average with 6 assists but wrangled in 7 rebounds, 4 more than his average 3, filling in as needed due to the missing Zach Randolph. With continued offensive performances Mike Conley is starting to work his way out of being considered under-valued to the rest of the NBA.
As a Grizzlies fan, a victory is always sweet. A win against the Spurs is especially sweet. The Memphis Grizzlies dominated the first half of the game on both ends of the court. They shot 51.3% from the field and held the Spurs to 36.8% and 4/13 from three. They entered the locker room with a 14 point lead, despite committing 6 turnovers and getting zero offensive rebounds. While this game didn’t possess the usual “heart attack” scenarios, the Spurs were able to fight back and bring the game within 3 during the 4th quarter after a 10-4 run. However, that was as close as they would get it. The Grizzlies continued to work the floor and answered with a 7-2 run. When Pop cleared his bench, we knew the game was over. Despite committing 14 turnovers in the second half, the Grizzlies shot the ball well, finishing the game at 49% shooting. The Grizzlies are starting to prove that they do have wing play-makers and can score the ball outside. Of course, it helped that San Antonio only landed 5 of their 22 3-point attempts (that’s only 23% people).
Marc Gasol was our second highest scorer with 17 points, followed by Tayshaun Prince with 12. Quincy Pondexter was also able to contribute productive minutes, shooting 2/3 from beyond the arc. With the absence of Zach Randolph, the Grizzlies were able to see some additional minutes from their rookie, Jarnell Stokes. While Jarnell did not score he was able to force adjustments and sent Tiago Splitter to the bench each time, giving way for Marc Gasol to go to work in the post.
The Grizzlies finished 2014 in fine fashion with this victory over the Spurs. Not only did we beat a divisional rival but clinched the best regular season win percentage in the NBA during the calendar year with a 60-23 record. (stat courtesy goes to @RossWooden) Enjoy your New Year Grizznation! See you all in 2015 when the Memphis Grizzlies take on the Los Angeles Lakers Friday, 1/2/15 at 9:30pm.
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- The Grizzlies are Backed Into A Corner: Spurs Win Game 5 - April 26, 2017
- Memphis at San Antonio: Grizzlies Did Not Layeth the Smacketh Down - March 25, 2017