Memphis Grizzlies Report Card
Grizzlies 101 - Timberwolves 97
Coach Dave Joerger: 1 Technical
Coach picked up another technical foul during the game; we all know that when Joerger picks up a technical, the team typically goes on to win the game and last night was no different. Marc Gasol received a technical of his own for arguing over an offensive foul, and Coach argued Gasol being called for the technical which resulted in his own. HCDJ played the bench for extended minutes during the first half, and he was right to do so as they shot a combined 11-14 from the field and went on a 20-11 run at one point. The Grizzlies started the second half by extending the lead to 15 before Minnesota clawed their way back into the game as the bench struggled. Coach could see the bench struggling and threw the starters back in the game early in the fourth quarter which in turn saw Memphis pull out a much needed win.
Mike Conley: 35 MINS | 17 PTS | 5-13 FG | 4 ASTS | 2 REBS | 2 STLS | +6
Captain Clutch did it again, hitting a huge three with 30 seconds left which put the Grizzlies up by 3. Mike was fouled on the next possession and made two clutch free throws which ultimately sealed the win for Memphis. Conley didn't have his greatest of shooting nights. But after seeing him average just 8 points over the last two games it was nice to see him get back to around his season average last night. Mike linked up well with Gasol during the game, dished out 4 assists for his teammates, and was one of three Grizzlies to finish the game with multiple steals.
Courtney Lee: 31 MINS | 5 PTS | 2-3 FG | 1 AST | 1 REB | +7
Courtney didn't exactly fill his stat sheet last night, he hit 2-2 field goal attempts in the first half including a three pointer, and he also had his only assist in the first half. What impressed me was the way CLee stopped Kevin Martin getting involved during the game. He was one of the main reasons KMart hit just 5-18 field goals, as he cut off any chance of Martin's teammates finding him by doing an exceptionally good job covering him and keeping tight on him when he did get a shot up. Courtney Lee is a fantastic defensive player and I think this sometimes goes unnoticed because of the number of quality defenders that are on the Grizzlies roster.
Jeff Green: 29 MINS | 13 PTS | 3-5 FG | 4 ASTS | 4 REBS | 2 BLKS | +1
Jeff got absolutely tortured by Andrew Wiggins last night. But what he did on the offensive end should be how he plays every game offensively. He didn't take many jump shots, only took one three point attempt, which he made, and did a great job driving to the basket and finishing or drawing the foul to get himself to the free throw line, where he made 6-7 on the night. These are the kinds of things we need Jeff to do in every game instead of taking numerous jump shots. Green also drew the foul on Kevin Garnett which in turn led to KG getting tossed as he picked up his second technical foul of the game. During the second half as Kevin Martin ran the floor to attempt the open layup, Jeff chased him down and got back to slap his attempt of the backboard to claim his second block of the game.
Zach Randolph: 33 MINS | 7 PTS | 3-7 FG | 11 REBS | 1 BLK | 7 TO | +9
ZBo has really struggled in Minnesota this year. It doesn't come as a shock that with Zach struggling, Memphis lost the first game and only just pulled out the win in last night's game. If Zach struggles, the whole team tends to struggle. His grade for this particular game would have been much lower if it wasn't for his 5 quick points late in the fourth quarter and his work on the boards as he finished with double digit rebounds. Randolph would turn the ball over 3 times in the first 7 minutes of the game, and had 5 turnovers at the half and 7 by the end of the game. His turnovers came in a number of different ways as he got stripped a couple of times, had shots blocked and simply threw the ball out of bounds as he looked for a pass. It came as a blessing in the fourth quarter when Flip Saunders decided to have Andrew Wiggins guard Zach. The Grizzlies got the ball to ZBo at the first opportunity and he got around Wiggins with some great footwork, finishing at the rim whilst drawing the foul which led to him completing the important +1 chance.
Marc Gasol: 35 MINS | 27 PTS | 11-14 FG | 4 ASTS | 11 REBS | 2 BLKS | +3
Marc started the game defending Pekovic exceptionally well. Pek would miss his first two field goal attempts before being called for the offensive foul on Marc as he tried his third shot of the game. Pekovic then got called for a defensive foul on Gasol and had to leave the game with his second foul of the first quarter. Aggressive Marc then returned for Memphis as he destroyed the Timberwolves to the tune of 27 points on 11-14 shooting from the field. Just like his front court partner, Marc also had a high number of turnovers in the game (6), but unlike Zach he didn't let this bother him as he knocked down almost every shot he took on the night. Had Marc been his usual self from the free throw line (just 5-9 on the night) he could have had yet another 30 point game. It was nice to see aggressive Marc return. I, for one hope that he's here to stay. Gasol picked up a technical foul in the third quarter after arguing with the official when he was called for an offensive foul as he made a hook shot.
Tony Allen: 22 MINS | 11 PTS | 5-9 FG | 1 AST | 2 REBS | 2 STLS | -4
Tony Allen had a great all round game last night. He caused havoc on the defensive end, helping himself to two steals, though he did struggle when guarding Wiggins. He did a great job cutting to the basket throughout the game, doing a decent job of finishing at the rim. With just a few seconds left in the game Tony found himself at the free throw line following a foul after pulling in the defensive rebound. He needed to make just 1-2 at the line to make it a two possession game. He did just that, which wrapped up the win for his team.
Kosta Koufos: 12 MINS | 4 PTS | 2-2 FG | 6 REBS | 1 BLK | +1
Kosta played with great energy in his 12 minutes off the bench. He did a fantastic job on the boards and hit both of his shots. I would have liked to see a little more of him in the game, but I can understand why he didn't play more with Gasol having a monster game. You know exactly what you're going to get when Kosta comes off the bench and he will never let you down when he plays.
Beno Udrih: 12 MINS | 8 PTS | 3-5 FG | 1 ASTS | 1 REB | 1 STL | -2
Beno had a nice game off the bench. He did a great job driving to the basket and also hit a couple of nice mid-range jumpers. He was part of the bench unit that hit 11-14 field goals in the first half and went on the 20-11 run as the starters struggled. Udrih has been great this season but I feel now that Calathes is about to become the backup point guard.
Nick Calathes: 12 MINS | 4 PTS | 2-3 FG | 6 ASTS | 2 REBS | 2 STLS | +2
The Swiss Army Knife was at it again last night. Calathes did a bit of everything off the bench: scoring, assisting, rebounding, stealing, behind the back dribbles, and full court passing leading to open layups. Nick has become a vital player for the team over the last couple of months. Looking ahead to the playoffs, I think he will get the majority of point guard minutes off the bench and rightly so after his recent performances.
Jon Leuer: 14 Minutes | 5 PTS | 2-3 FG | 3 REBS | 1 BLK | -3
Leuer got a few extra minutes last night and he took full advantage of them as he knocked down a couple of nice looking shots and did a good job on the boards. He needed to play well when called upon and he did just that as Randolph struggled through the game.
JaMychal Green: DNP CD
Jordan Adams: DNP CD