Well, it didn’t happen. The Grizzlies were not able to reciprocate the Clipper victory in game one at FEF.
Why, oh why? Why and how did the Grizzlies put themselves in position to be forced to go on a three-game winning streak to advance?
-They don’t have a player as good as Chris Paul, bottom line. Those shots he hit in the OT period were just nails in the Griz’ coffin for the game. His quickness and ability to make decisions off reverse screens are just traits that even the Grizzlies’ most diligent defensive efforts have not been able to overcome. Matters not who the Griz put on him.
-OJ and Marc with 10 FGA’s combined. That ain’t gonna work. Rudy Gay’s need to take over and prove his worth is great and all-but not at the expense of balance. Conley and Gay with 40 FGA’s combined? Really? Understood that Conley hit 10-for-15, that’s nice-but balance is how they won game two, and now the balancing act is suspended at about 4000 feet with no net underneath.
-The balance issues, the holding out of Gasol in game 3, etc…how much of this can we trace to Hollins? Maybe not much, but maybe a decent bit. Choking is not how what Hollins has done would be described-only the players can choke-but the solid platform of coaching confidence upon which the players have stood seems not quite as stable.
-Bright spot? Speights, with 9 and 6 in eleven minutes. His “other” minutes were given to Hamed Haddadi, which was, well, interesting. In eleven minutes himself, he had five boards and “only” two fouls (astounding for him). Blake Griffin is talented, but he’s no Malone…but the Grizzlies have no way to defend him.
Win or go home is now literal for the Grizzlies. Can they beat the Clippers three times in a row?