Yep, I’ll now play the “biggest win of the year” broken record.
Paul, Zach Randolph will stand where he likes for this jump ball, thanks.
Kevin, Marc Gasol will have none of it.
That tap-the-ball-back-out goaltend by Pierce was likely the most pathetic play I’ve ever seen from him.
Is there anything….
…better than a huge road win in such a trash-talk-filled hostile environment?
All the trash-talk, staredowns, shoves, and swagger in the world won’t win you a game when you get outhustled.
Tony Allen’s troops came out with the win. How?
-Marc Gasol. Never mind the free throw misses (more on those in a bit). The defense and rebounding he provided (holding KG to only 10 and 6) epitomized the “glue guy” reputation he’s earned. During crunch time in the fourth, when the Grizzlies switched everything on D, he played VERY capably and smartly. Quicker rotations by and for Gasol helped the whole team do what they had to do. Amazing poise on D and a huge lefty hook in the final few minutes.
-Former Celtics. Tony Allen and Leon Powe. Was it pure hustle, or was it a bit of “inside knowledge” about the tendencies of their old teammates? A bit of both, to be sure-but Powe knowing which way to spin and when to do it in the post just reeked of “I know how to do this to you”. Tony Allen did what he does, with a bit of extra relish on top for KG just after the final buzzer. That cat ain’t afraid of ANYTHING or ANYBODY. Sure, Ray-Ray hit a few threes, but Tony Allen’s play in the passing lanes and his anticipation (prior knowledge?) of where the ball was headed helped him lay out another defensive gem.
-Shane Battier, the invisible man. Invisible in the best way imaginable. 0-3 FG’s, so what. 2 TO’s, so what. 3 steals, that’s what I’m talkin’ about. Two amazing defensive possessions against “The Truth” (which, by the way, is something the Griz can handle) to finish the game, yeah, that’s it. Just some extremely focused defense. Well instructed and well executed.
-Sam Young’s…smart rebounding? Huh? Yep, he’s finally learned to do what Hollins tells him to do. Yes, he still has his limitations in terms of BBIQ-but his defense has improved to the point that gambling doesn’t get him the quick hook like it once did.
Ok. That’s enough. Biggest moment of the game? The timeout after Gasol missed those two FT’s. Marc trying to walk away from the huddle disgusted with himself…GV, OJ, Hollins, ZBo, Shane all took turns yelling at him to come in close. When they pulled him in, it was like a contest to see who could get a reassuring arm around him first and keep it there. This, ladies and gentlemen, is a T. E. A. M. Intense enough to yell at each other, but not to get each other down.
Best thing about the telecast? Just KNOWING that Brevin Knight SO BADLY wants to jump over that table and put on a Griz uni.
Right now, there is a plane in the air between BOS and ORD that is bursting with team pride. Keep it up Griz.