Marc Gasol relishes playing the Thunder. Some of Marc's more emotional (and scary) moments on the NBA court have come against OKC. With 40 wins in sight for the Grizzlies tonight, the Wendigo should be out in full force as he goes up against old and new faces in Kendrick Perkins and Mitch McGary while Steven Adams sits out.
Even before Gasol blossomed into the player he's become this season, he was laying pretty big numbers on Perk. And you look at the possibility of Gasol being guarded by a rookie with two games under his belt and your eyes get even wider as a Grizzlies fan. Here are some thoughts on the matchup from Marine Mangiaracina at Welcome to Loud City.
McGary hasn't had to face anyone with the defensive IQ of Gasol before, but it's obvious that he's going to have a physical advantage against Memphis' front line.
Still, it's a lot to expect a big performance out of a rookie in his third game. There's no past data to prove me wrong though, so I really can't say much. I will say that McGary has a long way to go to prove himself on the defensive end. As noted by Jeff Van Gundy on Sunday's telecast, McGary has yet to show that he can rotate and protect the rim effectively. McGary tends to stay home on his man, much as Perk does. With Perk's lack of athleticism, it's more okay for him to do. But ideally, you'd like to see McGary play more of an Ibaka-type role on D. For tonight's game, though, I wouldn't mind seeing him simply focus on containing Gasol and Koufos. The Grizzlies are a unique case, as always.
He better be ready. As this great article from Triangle Offense showed us, Marc has an extremely large variety of weapons and moves in his arsenal at this point in his career.