Memphis snapped a three-game winning streak against the Thunder. Rebounding and a late OKC run were keys to the Grizzlies loss. Marc Gasol played a magnificient second half but Russell Westbrook showed why he is in the MVP conversation with 38-13-12 and a tremendous performance down the stretch.
15-0 Westbrook run to close the game. Vomit.— Mark McCleskey (@MarkMcCleskey) February 4, 2017
Marc Gasol: A
31 points, 4 rebounds and 8 assists in 41 minutes (-8)
Gasol found his offensive rhythm in the second half and carried the Grizzlies with an incredible display. He also facilitated well. However he should do a better job rebounding the ball. Four rebounds is not enough for a center and OKC killed the Grizzlies on the boards last night.
Mike Conley: B-
18 points, 2 assists, 3 steals in 34 minutes (-13)
Conley started the game well but faded away as time went by. OKC put Robertson on him after half time and the strategy worked out. Conley only had 7 points in the second half and was not clutch.
Where was you going, Mr. Collison? pic.twitter.com/7RwWLKS6b3— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) February 4, 2017
Zach Randolph: C
16 points, 10 rebounds in 29 minutes (-19)
Randolph had a good offensive game but was a liability on defense. He played the last minutes of the game when Green fouled out and OKC took advantage. Lauvergne scored timely three pointers when Z-Bo was on him.
Uh...Zach Randolph was -19 tonight in 29 minutes. Those Lauvergne threes came against him several times- he was tied with Russ at +17.— Joe Mullinax (@JoeMullinax) February 4, 2017
Chandler Parsons: C
12 points, 3 rebounds in 24 minutes (-3)
Since his perimeter shot is not there yet, Parsons has become a cutter. He scored all his field goals in the paint including an uncharacteristic dunk. He played 23 minutes against OKC which probably means he will not see the floor tonight against Minnesota.
Vince Carter: C
7 points, 3 assists in 19 minutes (-6)
Like the rest of the Grizzlies bench, Carter did not provide a spark. He is showing his play-making abilities as of late, though. He averages 3 assists per game during the current road trip where Memphis is 3-2.
Tony Allen: C-
11 points, 4 rebounds in 29 minutes (-11)
The Grindfather was not a factor this time. He did a decent defensive job on Westbrook during the first half but could not control him down the stretch.
Andrew Harrison: D+
2 points, 2 assists in 14 minutes (+3)
Harrison had some defensive lapsus that ended up with easy OKC points in the paint. He did not try to do too much on the offensive end (1 for 2 from the floor).
James Ennis: D
5 points, 3 rebounds in 22 minutes (-9)
Ennis defended Westbrook for a big part of the second half. He tried his best but things did not go very well for him. He fouled out in the last minute of the game.
JaMychal Green: F
0 points, 4 rebounds in 24 minutes (+2)
Green had a rough night. He only shot the ball once and was unable to stop OKC from getting offensive rebounds. He fouled out with five minutes left in the game.
David Fizdale: D-
The game was decided in clutch time when
OKC Westbrook went for 15-0 run and the Grizzlies offense looked stagnant. Fizdale did not draw potentially successful offensive plays and that includes a wide-open Tony Allen's three attempt.
OKC killed the Grizzlies with offensive rebounds and points in the paint and he could not stop the bleeding. The Thunder outrebounded Memphis 48-29 including 17 offensive boards.
With Enes Kanter out, the Grizzlies should have outplayed the OKC bench and they did not. Some time ago, he admitted that he needs to bring Troy Daniels on the floor and the sharpshooter has played only 14 minutes in the last three games.
It is true that Green fouled out with five minutes left but playing Z-Bo in clutch time against a stretch four like Lauvergne is a questionable decision. Every team is likely to put him in a pick and roll situation.
Playing Gasol 41 minutes on the first game of a back-to-back is also controversial unless he is planning to give him the night off against Minnesota like he did early in the season.