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Grizzlies Grades: A sweet and horrendous win against the Hornets

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In one of the ugliest games ever played in recent NBA history, the Memphis Grizzlies managed to get the win at Charlotte. We analyze here how the "Grit & Grind" players did in the strange game where anybody wants to score baskets.

Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Memphis Grizzlies 71 – Charlotte Hornets 69

Report Card

STARTERS

Mike Conley: 34 MIN | 9 PTS | 3-14 FG | 0-3 3PT | 3-3 FT | 4 REB | 7 AST | 1 STL | 3 TO | -4

C+. A couple of free throws, a couple of missed shots, and a couple of assists. That was Mike at the end of the first quarter. And then it wasn't any better. "Conley missing everything," says my notebook in the part where I was supposed to type the Grizzlies buckets of the second quarter. He and Walker were shooting 0-14 at the half. WHAT!!! I wasn't sure if I was watching basketball, but I kept telling myself, "the second half can't be any worse". Finally in the third quarter Mike came back alive and got a bucket+1, just when the Hornets start realizing what was the purpose of the game. And in the last quarter, just after Kemba Walker made a huge 3, Conley thought, "OK, maybe I need to make a couple of baskets..." and he did. Then Marc and he wrote some Pick & Roll poetry to finish the game. Nice play, I'll give them that. MC always plays hard defense and smart basketball. But damn! Find your shooting Mike. Your team needs it.

Tony Allen: 34 MIN | 6 PTS | 3-7 FG | 0-1 FT | 4 REB | 4 STL | 1 TO | +4

B-. TA's game started with a Technical foul due to some chitchat with Lance Stephenson. I thought it was gonna be a fun game... Then some good hustle in good Allen-fashion. A couple of minutes more and the game was getting unwatchable, but we all know Tony hasn't got any problems with that. "It's all about DEFENSE, baby". He knows how to drive to the basket strong, and he got a couple of buckets. Also 4 steals in a game like that one is no joke. And the final defense running after Kemba Walker like a hungry American Stanford was just priceless.

Tayshaun Prince: 18 MIN | 2 PTS | 1-5 FG | 0-1 3PT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 1 TO | +/- 0

C. Prince started a game. Again. And Brevin Knight said better than anyone: "If Prince is playing, as a coach you don't have to worry about him." With these words he meant well but I mean a bit worse, so I'll add: "That's right Brevin. The coach doesn't have to worry about him. But neither does the other team." But anyway, I don't really know if I like Prince or not. Seriously, I think nobody does. He is just there NOT making a couple of shots here and there. But he doesn't give you any troubles. So good for him. Oh, he got the final rebound to ensure the win. Average.

Zach Randolph: 29 MIN | 12 PTS | 6-12 FG | 12 REB | 1 TO | +4

B. Double Double. 50% shooting. +4 with him in the court. First bucket for him in a one-to-one lesson schooling pale Zeller. Beasting at the end of the first quarter with 3 buckets in a row. Only two buckets in the second half: one it was a beautiful ZBOund, and the other one a ZBO-kind-of-dunk (you forget the +1 referee) with two minutes remaining in the game. He always plays hard. He always makes some old-fashioned points. He always gets rebounds. Good effort in a tenebrous post-Halloween hangover game. A win it's a win, so good fight Zbo.

Marc Gasol: 36 MIN | 22 PTS | 9-18 FG | 4-5 FT | 8 REB | 2 AST | 4 TO | +9

B+. Third 20+ points game and 3-0 for the Memphis Grizzlies. He is more aggressive than ever. He doesn't think when he's opened. He just shoots. And we all are happy with that. 50% shooting, 8 rebounds (the effort is there), good defense (like always) against the best opponent player (Al Jefferson), the first bucket of the game, and the last one too (a beautiful 2+1 with one minute remaining). When things on the court start going not so well, just give the ball to him. Amazing things happen. OK, maybe yesterday amazing things didn't happen because it was a strange game, but still, pass him the damn ball. Good played Big Marc. Keep the 20+ nights comin' compatriot.

BENCH

Vince Carter: 20 MIN | 9 PTS | 3-8 FG | 3-5 3PT | 4 REB | 4 TO | +1

B-. The secong unit in general is just bad. They don't have any rhythm. Carter seems confortable with the ball, but there are no plays to make (Calathes, we miss you). It's always a beautiful thing to see him shooting long 3 pointers, though. Yesterday he made three 3s. And that was all. Some turnovers too. But nine points off the bench in a 71-69 win? Hell, yeah. I can live with that. I mean, with the nine points. NOT with the 71-69 thing...

Quincy Pondexter: 17 MIN | 2 PTS | 0-1 3PT | 2-2 FT | 1 STL | +/-0

C. To my eyes, Quincy is dangerously becoming a Prince 2.0. You don't have to worry about him. And he plays focused on defense and makes clean passes on offense. Both had a +/-0 in the game. Maybe after all the discussions about starting Pondexter instead of Prince, Joerger was the smartest guy, and he just realized that neither of them is suitable for the job. I want to believe there is still hope to Pondexter to become a good player for the Grizzlies, but I haven't seen anything special yet. Average.

Kosta Koufos: 19 MIN | 1 PTS | 0-2 FG | 1-2 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 2 TO | -3

D. Kosta is just playing horrible. We need you Kos'.

Beno Udrih: 21 MIN | 6 PTS | 3-8 FG | 0-1 3PT | 2 REB | 5 AST | 1 STL | 2 TO | +5

C+ He made 3 good buckets. And the box score says he delivered 5 assists. But wow! I can't believe it. Because the passing and the creation of plays for his teammates is definitely not his thing. But his shooting ability comes in handy for the Grizzlies, so we all like you Beno. Good game.

Jon Leuer: 12 MIN | 2 PTS | 1-5 FG | 0-1 3 PT | 2 REB | 1 STL | -6

D. Where are you Jon "Buckets" Leuer? Once upon a time you were good shooting the ball. Come back, or maybe it's time to release Jarnell out there in the wild zones.

DNP for both Jordan Adams & Jarnell Stokes

And Thank you Coach for that. No need for the young guns to be involved in one of the ugliest and most horrendous games we, as Grizzlies fans, have ever watched (and yeah, we've watched plenty).

Anyway, good job guys.

3-0 is what matters. And WINNING IS ALWAYS SWEET. Maybe it was NOT AN AMAZING GAME, but any Grizzlies game is worth watching. And we'll always be there.

"Take courage when the road is long / don't ever forget you're never alone."