The Memphis Grizzlies, and especially their fans, got a much needed win over the Boogie Cousins-less Kings on the second night of a back-to-back (we shan't mention the front end of the SEGABABA) in Sacramento 103-89 to improve to 3-2 on the season.
Here are five thoughts from last night's game:
Zach Randolph - I have to admit something: If things went south last night with Z-Bo and the Grizzlies, I was fully prepared to turn this very recap into a post explaining how the NBA may have passed the big, burly power forward over.
But Zach didn't allow that to happen. He did not allow me to write him off. That's because he went for a cool 20 & 11, and it was straight Vintage Z-Bo stuff. He was jab-stepping and fading away. He gave Willie Cauley-Stein the head-in-chest, ball-tucked barrel to the basket into a flip hook. He shoved his way under the rim so deep that when he got the ball, he literally just threw it over his head and it went right in.
It was straight out of 2011 Z-Bo, and I had almost forgotten how much fun it was to watch.
JaMychal Green -
Dear San Antonio Spurs,
On behalf of the Memphis Grizzlies organization and Grizzlies fans across the world, I'd like to thank you for not keeping JaMychal Green when you signed him last season which resulted in him ending up on the Grizzlies roster.
I mean, seriously, thanks a bunch, Spurs. You've given the Grizzlies a completely different dimension at power forward.
JaM Green, who finished with 12 points and 12 rebounds in 18 minutes against the Kings, is the quintessential role player: incredibly high motor, great athlete, does the little things, scores garbage buckets, great rebounder, willing mid-range and corner-three shooter.
This guy is great, and he's clearly earned himself the role of the fourth big in the rotation. And if it continues, come January, he'll have his 2016 contract become guaranteed.
Brandan Wright - This was the first game where the Grizzlies have had to play Wright near starters' minutes (26) with a neck injury forcing Marc Gasol to sit out the second half.
Wright finished with 10 points, six rebounds, four blocks, and three assists, and he was consistently in the right position on both ends of the floor.
This will not be the only game this season where the Grizzlies will have to rely on Wright to take the minutes of either Marc or Zach, so a performance like the one he turned in against the Kings should instill some confidence in the Grizzlies going forward.
Jordan Adams - So Jordan Adams did not play against the Kings, and he really has not played much at all this season.
This has been the topic of much discussion among Grizzlies fans and led the #FreeJordanAdams movement to evolve into the #FreeJordanAdamsForever movement.
Well, last night before the game, Dave Joerger said that he wants to play Jordan, but that he's having to be careful with him because he's not only coming back from an off-season injury. But it sounds like he may have aggravated something in the Golden State game.
I had wondered if injuries had something to do with the lack of minutes Jordan was receiving early on this season, and it sounds like that's exactly what it was. It's great to hear Joerger say he wants to play Jordan Adams, because, at this point, he's earned it. He looks deserving of more minutes virtually every time he gets the chance to play.
Get well soon, Jordan.
Courtney Lee - Lee finished with 16 points and five rebounds and, probably most importantly, 13 shot attempts.
I wrote back during the preseason that it had seemingly been lost between Mike Conley and Jeff Green's contract years that Courtney Lee was also in the final year of his deal. The frustration with Lee often stems from his reluctance to shoot, not lack of skill or talent or anything like that. It's simply that everybody wants him to shoot more.
Lee has taken 51 shots through five games, which is just over 10 shots per game.
Last season, Lee shot 643 times in 77 games, roughly 8.3 shots per game.
That's nearly two more shots a game coming from, statistically, the Grizzlies' best outside shooter. And it would not shock me if Lee's shots per game number levels off at 11 or so.
It's contract year, C-Lee. Shoot as much as you want.