Well, that second half was much easier on the eyes (though not perfect by any means) than the laziness- and turnover-riddled first half. Seemed as if the Grizzlies would rather have been home watching that silly other sport on Sunday afternoon.
Methinks Hollins took ‘em by the scruff of their collective neck at the half in classic Hollins fashion and told them in no uncertain terms to get it done.
Just a couple quick thoughts about another meaningless preseason game…
-The Grizzlies played some good dogged Griz-style D, especially in that third quarter, but there were far too many times in the game when the Hawks were able to spread the floor to a degree that the entire lane and environs was devoid of a Griz jersey. Not good, and it led to many cuts and backdoors for easy hoops by Teague, Ivan the Terrible, etc. Awareness and defensive spacing will have to improve before the real season starts, or this could be a problem for the Griz against many teams.
-ZBo. Throwin’ up rainbows, posting up for the leaner-spin off the right shoulder, and a couple extra-nice bounce passes on the cut to a teammate. He’s got his head in it, and if the body can keep up (looks ok so far, eh?), he should be very close to May ’11 vintage Zbo, which was one of the most exquisite the league has ever seen. Double-double, h0-hum.
-Three-point shooting, and not just Conley’s stellar 5-5. Pondexter’s first three of the game came on one of the most beautiful Grizzlies possessions I recall (yep, I know it’s preseason-but that play, you know the one I mean, was just awesome). Unselfishness. One of those plays were it almost seemed like the Griz were over-passing…but the shot clock didn’t run out on them. Ellington hit a couple, and they didn’t seem rushed. QPon hit a couple, and they were vintage Battier fourth-quarter jobs. Oh, that the longball might become something upon which the Griz can rely at least a little bit…
-the first-half laziness. Gay, Conley, Gasol…they were all guilty of some Hollins-mania-inducing poor passing leading to the Hawks scoring a TON of points off a dozen or so first-half Griz TO’s. The ship was righted somewhat in the second half, but focus must round into shape in the next couple weeks. It was cut timing as well as pass timing that wasn’t right…but I suppose that’s why the preseason is there. Bayless, for his unsteadiness in the first couple games, helped the team get it together.
Preseason, but it was very nice to see the Griz hold onto what became a very slim lead in the final two minutes of the game.
Keep workin’ guys. It ain’t there yet, but it’s getting closer.