The Memphis Grizzlies played the Atlanta Hawks last night and won for the first time in what feels like forever. Tonight they faced the Boston Celtics to see if they could do it again. The Celtics were coming into FedExForum on the second night of a back to back after losing to the Utah Jazz.
The Grizzlies started strong tonight. Marc Gasol looked much better than he did last night at the start of the game, moving better on both ends of the floor. That went away pretty quickly, as Andrew Harrison and Dillon Brooks struggled to get around screens and stay with their man on defense, letting the Celtics get open looks from beyond the arc.
The Boston Celtics got two threes from Jayson Tatum and Kyrie Irving to give them an early seven point lead. Andrew Harrison had two early fouls and James Ennis made an appearance early in the first quarter after not playing last night. The Grizzlies had four turnovers mid way through the first quarter which led to nine points for the Celtics. It didn’t get any better as the quarter went on, and they had a lot of problems containing the Celtics’ wings. In the first quarter, Kyrie had seven points, Tatum had six points, and Jaylen Brown had six points. The Grizzlies ended up with twelve points at the end of the first quarter and that actually seemed impressive.
The second quarter started with an unusual suspect at the point guard position, as Kobi Simmons checked into the game to see what he could offer the Grizzlies. They went on a mini run spurred by the unlikely characters, Jarell Martin and Deyonta Davis, forcing the Celtics to call a timeout and regroup. Until that time the Grizzlies had only scored four points in the first three minutes of the second quarter. They continued to play well with a young group of guys in the lineup and Tyreke Evans. They were even able to get it down to a six point deficit at one point int he second quarter.
Tyreke was leading the way on the offensive end, dropping in 15 mid way through the second quarter. He was the only reason the Grizzlies were even in the game at all up to that point. The Grizzlies were down nine points with the second quarter almost over and Marc Gasol sitting on the bench for the entire quarter except for the last few minutes. The Grizz were able to keep the lead relatively close thanks to Gasol and Dillon Brooks, but the Celtics still held a eight point lead at halftime.
The Grizzlies started off the third quarter with back to back threes by Tyreke Evans and JaMychal Green. They were able to play better defense and tie the game up with just over seven minutes left in the quarter. Marc started to heat up, scoring seven points quickly in the third quarter. Kobi Simmons made a return to the lineup, playing off the ball as the shooting guard. The Grizzlies let the defense slip, and just like that the Celtics were back up nine with a little over three minutes left to go in the third. Gasol was not going to let this game get away, playing like crazy on defense and scoring everything on the offensive end. Marc gave the Grizzlies the lead heading into the fourth quarter after knocking down everything possible in the third quarter.
The Grizzlies got down nine points within the first three minutes of the fourth, forcing Memphis to call a timeout and put Marc Gasol back in the game. Unfortunately, that did not make much of a difference as they were only able to score three points halfway through the fourth quarter. They stopped moving on offense and started running more isolation plays and drives for kickout threes, which did not work all that well. Dillon Brooks did everything he could to get the Grizzlies back in the game, knocking down several threes and a mid range jumper as well. Grizzlies were able to get the game within six points with two minutes left in the game but the Celtics’ rebounding proved too much for them, earning Boston multiple chances on many possessions. The Grizzlies played well, but it was not enough, as they dropped another one to the Boston Celtics 102-93.