The Bulls pulled ahead with a 31-21 second quarter, and kept the Grizzlies at bay until the final buzzer as the Grizzlies saw their six-game win streak come to a halt. Here are my three takeaways from the Grizzlies loss:
1) Marc Vs. Pau
With Derrick Rose missing the game due to illness, the Marc Gasol vs. Pau Gasol matchup was the one to keep an eye on, but both of the brothers struggled throughout the game. Marc won the battle of futility with a 13-point, 10-rebound double double, but shot 5-15 from the field. On the other end of the duel Pau pocketed 6 points and 11 boards on 2-7 from the floor.
In the end, it was bench play that played more of a role in the game's outcome than the battle of the brothers. Each side had two reserves score in double figures, including a career-high 27 points from Chicago's Nikola Mirotic.
2) Nikola Mirotic Might be the Newest #GrizzKiller
In the first meeting between the Grizzlies and Bulls this season, Chicago rookie Nikola Mirotic made his case to join the likes of Eric Bledsoe and Kevin Martin in the fraternity of Grizz killers, posting 27 points and 8 rebounds on 7-10 from the field, including an absurd 6-6 from behind the three-point arc. Mirotic's size coupled with his shooting ability created matchup problems for Memphis as Zach Randolph was unable to keep up with him out on the perimeter. Off the bench, Jon Leuer found a bit more success, but by that point Mirotic had already done most of his damage.
Mirotic has quietly been one of the better rookies of the season, averaging 7.4 points and 5.2 rebounds in 18.2 minutes per game.
3) Tony Allen Shades
Tony Allen missed the game with a corneal abrasion suffered during the win against Golden State earlier in the week, but was still on the bench rocking these sick shades:
Fixed."@FlyerGrizBlog: I’m going to vote for Tony Allen to wear those sunglasses whenever he’s in the game, not just when he’s out."— Chase Lucas (@deepfriedcouch) December 20, 2014