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Whoof. That one stings, maybe even worse than game one?

That last “possession” was a real mess..sorta…but not really, but the problems started well before that few moments.

Three things cost the Grizzlies this game:Item first: Foul trouble be darned, MARC GASOL HAS TO 1) be on the floor, and 2) get his hands on the ball on offense (that steal by CP notwithstanding). Hollins should have played Marc until he fouled out, and THEN figure out what to do without him, instead of pulling him and leaving a foul on the floor, so to speak. 11 and 10 with 3 blocks in 35 minutes. If that number is about 39 minutes, the Griz likely win the game. The playing Pondexter so much was understandable, as he was hot….except that he had ZERO points in the second half, sickeningly similar to the way Gasol had zero second-half points in game one. Mareese Speights has had a couple good stretches in the series, but he’s been such a huge liability on D that it’s not worth the sweet jumper and occasional hard glasswork.

Item second: Not defending the three. That last three from Foye was the killer, but the other seven threes (out of only seventeen attempted) set the stage for the now-routine Blowing of the Lead as the game progressed. Some late in the shot clock (like the one to open the fourth) and some earlier off set plays-they all did the same damage. It’s been a problem for the Grizzlies all year, especially after playing 20 seconds of quality D against teams like the Suns, Spurs, etc. Throttling back the threes for the Clippers is the key to the Griz winning the series if they are to do so. Bigger than stopping Paul, MUCH bigger than stopping DunkBoy.That’s been the calling card of Grizzlies teams past that played no D-letting some random guy (i.e. Mo Williams, Randy Foye) beat them.

Item third: OJ’s turnovers. Does the fact that OJ, with his 1-8 and 5 TO’s, was a big reason for this loss make it MORE likely that MH opens the wallet to keep him this summer? Does MH bet that OJ will become less of a TO guy who loses games and more of the insta-offense guy we saw in the first two games? The ever-hyped-cliche “barometer” term sure does fit OJ, especially for a guy who many deem a “possibly expendable” asset. It’s hard to say,  but his total lack of fear is, as it is for many shooters, a blessing and a curse. His lack of conscience pulling the trigger is one thing, but if he doesn’t learn to control the ball more effectively, he’s gonna cost himself some major money on his “meat of the career” contract.

The Grizzlies, once again, took 39 FT attempts, to the Clippers’ 30..and made as many as the Clips attempted. The Clippers, for their part, missed a whole ton of free throws before those last-minute jobs.

Not throwing the game away after going down thirteen IN A HURRY in the second quarter was admirable, but the final is the only score that matters.

A rare badly-coached game? Too many threes? Who knows, but “must-win” is quite an understatement when referring to game four.

Come on Grizzlies.

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17 Responses to Grizzlies Lose ANOTHER Fourth-Quarter Lead, Lose to Clippers

  1. EPNo Gravatar says:

    Our lack of backcourt production killed us this game. I do not understand why the only guy that attacks(slashes) to the basket is the one with the shakiest handles -Rudy. Clippers only shotblocker barely plays BG and Evans will foul before blocking your shot. In game 2 mayo took it to the hole thats why he was so much better.

    Also when is Gasol going to exploit his matchup advantages??? Zbo isnt going to be zach 2011 so Marc needs to stop being so passive he was 3/5 fgas??? he had Griffin and Evans guarding him majority of the game?!?! If he doesn’t get selfish soon we will loose this series. Rudy is the only Grizzly attacking his mismatches if he had better handles he would avg 30ppg.

  2. JoelNo Gravatar says:

    Like Pete said postgame, The Clippers have not won any of these games, The Grizz have LOST them. CMON GRIZZ!

  3. GrizzdocNo Gravatar says:

    Not that it should have come down to this, but that final possession was a mess as well. Conley had a completely open lane to the basket, he should have driven to the hoop. He would have gotten the layup or gotten fouled in doing so. We didn’t need a 3 pointer to win the game.

    I can’t get over our completely lack of 4th quarter execution. These are games that we have won all season long, and yet we look like the inexperienced team with the deer in the headlights look.

    And need I mention it again–4th quarter free throws are killing us. Our FT percentage wasn’t bad overall, but you hit them all down the stretch in both gms 1 and 3 and we are up 3-0.

  4. MattNo Gravatar says:

    The Griz have lost these games and the Clips have won. The better team is up after 48 minutes, not 36, or 40, or 44. 48. The end. A loss is a loss. Stop whining and play 48 minutes

  5. BBIQNo Gravatar says:

    I am with you that MGasol should be more selfish but if you look at the +-…he is +17!! So even not shooting and attacking the rim enough, he was doing the right things.

  6. AussieGNo Gravatar says:

    So many stupid errors, mistakes and turnovers.. not just from OJ, from everyone. Those errors were a sparkplug that ignited Clippers struggling offense and got the crowd alive. Happened time and time again, such a frustrating loss. Played well enough to win, but let them off the hook with silly mental errors.

  7. WilliamNo Gravatar says:

    Once again our offense gets stagnant too much for too long because we don’t do what our strength is…get the ball in the paint, get putbacks, get to the line. Instead we fall in love with the permimeter game and when we’re not hitting, all goes south. When it’s at it’s best, our offense more or less revolves around Marc. He can score on most defenders and he’s a great passer. The same goes for Z-bo even though he doesn’t seem to have the lift he did last year. But the ball should run through those two all the time. Rudy’s a great scorer but we can’t live on his jumper or OJ’s. We have to win the next game in LA or this is over. In the offseason we need a true shooter…a night in / night out shooter.

    I agree with Grizzdoc, I thought Conley could’ve made it into the lane and got a decent look from short range or drawn a foul. I understand Rudy was hot at that point but still.

  8. HartNo Gravatar says:

    I thought our Defense could have been better in this game. Too many times I saw our guys making the wrong move and let their man get to the basket. It’s just a matter of matching the intensity. What the Clippers lack in talent (everyone who isn’t BG or CP3) they make up for in effort. Reggie Evans is playing with a lot of heart and it’s getting contagious. I agree with the idea that the Clipps aren’t winning these games. The Grizzlies are losing them. Also agree that Conley needed to take that ball to the house on final possession; we didn’t need a 3 to win. Rudy’s 2 miracle 3’s were too miraculous to happen a 3rd time.

  9. presidentjoeNo Gravatar says:

    This game was a stark reminder of the difference in a great PG and an average PG. That last possession showed that so clearly. With 7 seconds left Conley pulls up his dribble and does his circle routine while the defense gets set. If he drives to the basket and either shoots or dishes to MG or Zbo then he either gets fouled or makes the perfect pass. Like
    JB said Conley has to drive all the way in that possession.
    Two of the those turnovers counted against OJ were not his fault. He threw them into MG and Gasol could’t hold the ball.
    Statistically, that game was a nightmare for OJ. But I still don’t think the answer to the team’s salary situation is not resigning him. Chances are he will not get a big offer on the free market. If the Grizz lose this series they have to reassess their current starting five not OJ.

  10. Anthony MorrisonNo Gravatar says:

    Mike was way short on two key shots late in the game – one a 2, the other a 3. I was not surprised, as he didn’t get his early 4th quarter rest while CP3 was resting. This is all because Hollins has no trust in what seems like his 17 backup point guards. And by the way, Speights giving Fake the free dunk at the end of the half – I actually predicted that before the free throws. Sometimes it hurts to know your team so well! Anyway, I’m not giving up – Go Grizz!

  11. GrizzliesDieHardNo Gravatar says:

    Time and time again mike conley shrinks up at the end of the ball games because he doesn’t have intestinal fortitude. There is no doubt that oj mayo played a terrible game but I still have enough trust in him to leave him on the floor late in games and make aggressive plays. I will never and have never felt that same confidence in Mike Conley, never.

    Rudy Gay continues to play lackluster perimeter defense which I think is the biggest weakness of the grizzlies. Rudy Gay is a classic example of fools gold as he often posts great stats but his overall impact on the game leaves something to be desired. Gay is the one player on this team with the God-given talent to be great, but he always fails to bring maximum effort on both ends of the floor. He seems to only be interested in scoring. He leaves Nick Young open for shots throughout every game and allowing Foye to pull up in his face uncontested is simply inexcusable.

    Lionel Hollins must understand how fragile our leads are late in the games and continue to go to Marc Gasol down the stretch. Marc needs to receive the ball on the block not on the high post. I think this offseason we should explore trading Rudy Gay for assets and retaining Mayo. We maybe eventually have to part ways with Mike Conley in order to reach the promised land. This season we
    have seen Mayo win more games for us I’m the 4th quarter than any perimeter player on our team. Speights also killed us with a bunch of dumb plays and a lack of boxing out. For a player once questioned for his effort, Big Mo resorted to shooting quick jump shots and not rebounding down the stretch.

  12. Nolan CrooksNo Gravatar says:

    My three things regardless of the first three quarters, cause lets get real grizzlies fan the problem is quarter number four!
    1.) Rudy touches the ball ever position in the fourth quarter
    2.) Make Free Throws and Block out on the other end!
    3.) Convert after timeouts especially when the clippers get hot and we need to cool them off.
    All three of these things effected game one and three!
    Come on Grizz we should be up 3-0

  13. ReginaldNo Gravatar says:

    I blame Rudy for that loss. I don’t care about the 2 threes he hit at the end or the miss that could’ve won the game. I blame him for shots NOT taken! He’s an athletic and long 6’9″ small forward being guarded by a 6’3″ shooting guard!!!!! TAKE HIM TO THE BLOCK AND PUNISH HIM!!! NO fadeaways, nothing fancy. Go to the block, sit down and demand the ball! Three things are going to happen. 1) You’re going to get an easy layup or get fouled b/c he can’t guard you! 2) They’re going to double him, which will then lead to an open shot, open lane, just lots of confusion on the court. 3)Going to get a shot that is contested by one of the big men and if you miss, that leads to an offensive rebound b/c we now have the advantage for the rebound! I promise that bball can be really simple at times.

  14. EvanNo Gravatar says:

    How many lay-ups did we miss in the last 5 minutes?

    Too damn many.

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