AND RUDY GAY WENT 9-18!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Just had to get those out of my system.
When a 92-point 17-turnover outing is the most shiny offensive gem we’ve seen from the Grizzlies in a while, you know things have been bad on offense. This game was not, however, a cringe-inducer. Except for the two dozen or so and-ones the Grizzlies gave up to the Suns. And well, that first stretch of the fourth where the Griz turned it over about sixty times.
If you’ve read this site before, it’s not gonna be hard to guess my favorite boxscore item from this game…
Why, yes, that’s right-the Grizzlies had 22 assists on 37 makes. Beats the stew out of the 13 on 31 in the Portland game, huh? Tony Allen’s two assists were perhaps the best of the night, both to ZBo. Both were tough interior passes with Tony in motion, and the reason they were best of the night? They represent what the Grizzlies did SO WELL for the first several weeks of the season-make motion toward the hoop, draw a defender, and find the man the help left standing near/under the hoop. Bayless also had a couple of nice ones. Sure, the Suns’ interior D is not tops in the NBA by any stretch-but re-finding some of the interior passing prowess on display earlier in the season is of paramount importance.
Bayless didn’t just have “a” nice assist-9pts 7rebs 6ast with ZERO turnovers is a way-above-acceptable stat line for a backup PG, and it was very interesting to see some extended Conley/Bayless time in the fourth quarter…perhaps even more interesting that Bayless was the PG for the most part during that stretch. Can’t really give him any “hockey turnovers”, either-the TO’s came from a variety of sources, and were not a result of him putting guys in a jam when he got them the ball.
Gay, Randolph, and Gasol all had very competent games. Gay didn’t really play all that differently-still made most of his moves a bit later in the shot clock than we’d all prefer, but that pullup is just unguardable. When it falls, all is well. When it doesn’t, well….yeah. Randolph went 9-11, which was beautiful, especially considering his body almost certainly still isn’t right from that flu, and he had his wing “jumper” working. Almost strange how his footwork creating space for that jumper is just as pretty to watch as his footwork in the post. Gasol’s game was somewhat discombobulated on the offensive end, with 5 turnovers and a couple of very unGasolish errant passes. As has become habit, the Grizzlies’ starting frontline was very strong on the glass, with 23 boards among them, which was a +4 against the Suns’ starting frontmen.
It’ll be another late night for the Grizzlies, flying to Sacramento for tomorrow’s game. Will they be able to keep up the energy against a Kings team who have actually been playing halfway decent ball?