Zach Randolph returned to the starting line-up after missing four games with injury. The Grizzlies' offense had looked faster and better spaced in his absence, observations which fanned the trade rumor flames. But for now, Z-Bo is firmly planted in Memphis.
As you would expect on a Sunday afternoon against the worst team in the league, Memphis took a casual approach to this one. Their early play was good enough to build a 10-point lead but not good enough to extend it, as Philly (Phila?) stayed within single digits throughout the first half. The Grizz started 9-25 in the paint and gave up 6 blocks in the first half, neither of which signaled the strong interior presence we hoped Z-bo would bring back with him. One of the nine was a pretty in-out-in setup by Mario Chalmers, though:
Things got hairy in the third as Philly made 4 threes, the last of which tied the game at 51. Memphis' offensive struggles continued, as they were being outshot 41% to 39% midway through the quarter. The Sixers' sixth three gave them at 67-64 lead going into the fourth quarter. With six minutes left in the game, the visitors still held a 4-point edge, when the Grizzlies finally locked in and took the lead back for good.
Memphis finished the game on a 21-8 run. Mike Conley (19 points, 5 assists) and Zach Randolph (17 points, 11 rebs) led the Grizzlies statistically, and Matt Barnes was once again great off the bench - 13 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists. Isaiah Canaan led Philadelphia with 16 points. The Grizzlies had 26 turnovers. Philly had 27.
Here it is, your moment of Zen: