The shorthanded Memphis Grizzlies came into tonight with the hopes of grabbing a road win after a home loss last night. Something that hurt the Grizzlies in last night's loss was a slow start. Well, the Grizzlies' offense was rolling in the first quarter. Matt Barnes was off to an extremely hot start with 18 points in the first 12 minutes of play. Former Grizzly Jerryd Bayless came out strong in the first quarter and had 8 points at halftime. Lance Stephenson caught fire in the second quarter and had 11 points at halftime. Memphis' defense was poor in the first quarter and for some of the second quarter. However, the Grizzlies started to get consecutive stops as the second quarter went on, and they had forced 8 Milwaukee turnovers by halftime. By midway through the second quarter, there had been 8 lead changes already. But Memphis pulled out to a 10-point lead before the Bucks cut it down to 6 at the break (53-47). No Milwaukee players were in double digits at halftime, while Matt Barnes lead the Grizzlies with 18.
JaMychal Green had 9 points at halftime, including this acrobatic putback:
The Bucks came out swinging in the third quarter and quickly gained a one point lead. However, the Grizzlies closed the quarter with a 12-4 run to combat the Milwaukee surge. Antetokounmpo exploded in this quarter and had a total of 15 points by the end of the period. The Grizzlies struggled with paint defense, and the Bucks shot 18 free throws by the fourth quarter. But key contributions by the bench players helped keep the Grizzlies afloat and gain a five point lead going into the fourth quarter. To start off the final period, Memphis' offense went completely stagnant. The Bucks feasted off a few Memphis turnovers and quickly gained a 6 point lead with less than 7 minutes left. It seemed as if the Grizzlies could get nothing on the offensive end. Turnovers really hurt Memphis in this one. As a team, they had 15. The Bucks expanded their lead to 11 with about 5 minutes to go, and Milwaukee seized this one from there.
Newest Grizzly Xavier Munford had 2 points and 2 steals in his debut. For the Bucks, Greg Monroe had 14 points and really got things rolling for them in the beginning of the third quarter. Lance Stephenson ended up with 19 points, and Matt Barnes only scored 2 points (both of which were free throws) after his explosive first quarter. Things got interesting when John Henson committed a flagrant foul on Lance Stephenson toward the end of the fourth quarter. Matt Barnes made the technical free throw and Lance Stephenson made his two free throws to cut the deficit to 7. However, Memphis' offense continued to struggle, and the Grizzlies were unable to generate enough points to pull this one out. The Bucks bench played virtually the entire fourth quarter and really contributed to this win for Milwaukee. Tyler Ennis had 13 points off the bench.
Things got heated at the end of this one. After a score with less than 10 seconds left, John Henson taunted Matt Barnes and received his second technical of the night and was, therefore, ejected out of the game. Matt Barnes also received a technical foul. The Grizzlies were visibly frustrated during their collapse in the fourth quarter.
Now, the Grizzlies return home Saturday to face the infamous Los Angeles Clippers. Let's hope the home crowd can help Memphis snap their four game losing streak on Saturday.