The Memphis Grizzlies picked up another win against a team they should beat last night against the Phoenix Suns. The first half was a shootout with neither team playing much defense. The big question going into the game was whether there would be any bad blood remaining between these two teams since their last encounter 3 weeks ago. Vince Carter answered that question 8 minutes in with this elbow to Devin Booker.
The sequence resulted in Vince’s ejection but seemed to wake the Grizzlies up and get them playing. Thanks to a strong second half, the Grizzlies ran away with this one to wrap it up with a score of 130-112.
Most of the team was deserving of a good grade, however there was one unexpected bad grade.
Marc Gasol - A+
Marc Gasol is apparently still hot since Sunday’s matinee against Denver. Gasol went off for 28 points (5-5 from three!!!), 7 rebounds, and 5 assists, and was in complete control all game. Gasol sparked the Grizzlies in the 3rd with a barrage of 3 pointers to extend the lead. He proved again that he’s one of the best players in the NBA.
Mike Conley - A+
Conley had an equally impressive performance last night, scoring 29 points and dishing out 8 assists. He orchestrated the offense to a 75 point second half. He was smart with the ball, knowing when to score and when to pass while not committing a single turnover. Another great game from our Conductor.
Zach Randolph - A
It’s a shame Zach Randolph doesn’t get the attention he deserves as a Sixth Man of the Year candidate. Following Sunday’s monster game against Denver, Z-Bo scored 23 points to go along with 8 rebounds off the bench. He and Brandan Wright have played great together in the second unit, and resulted in another Z-Bo dunk. Another classic performance from Z-Bo.
Tony Allen - B
TA played a great game last night, consistently finding empty space beneath the basket resulting in easy points. He continues to make questionable decisions on offense, but helping hold Devin Booker to 3-11 shooting is enough to earn Tony a B.
James Ennis - B
After not playing Sunday, James Ennis made the most of his opportunity last night. His stat line wasn’t spectacular, but he provided the Grizzlies a solid complementary piece on a night he might not have played if it weren’t for Carter’s ejection.
JaMychal Green - D
JaMychal was a non-factor last night. He only played 18 minutes, partially due to Z-Bo’s game, but you still expect more out of a starter than the 4 points and 3 rebounds he contributed. It’s games like these that make you wonder if JaMychal will be worth the price tag this summer.
Chandler Parsons - D
Grizzlies fans are still waiting for that breakout Parsons game, and some are wondering if it will happen this season. Parsons did drain a 3, and I liked Fizdale experimenting with Parsons playing some point-forward. His assist total doesn’t show it, but his facilitating did help set up a few easy Grizz baskets. I still have a glimmer of hope that Parsons isn’t a lost cause this year.
The Bench (Toney Douglas and Brandan Wright) - B
Toney Douglas is slowly winning me over with his effort on a nightly basis. He fights hard for every loose ball, and that energy will be a positive influence for this team.
Brandan Wright has played great off the bench since his return from injury. In 17 minutes, he scored 9 points while grabbing 5 rebounds. He plays well alongside both Z-Bo and Gasol which will be huge come playoff time. Solid game last night from Wright.
Overall, it was a great game from the Grizzlies, as they swept the season series against Phoenix. Now it’s time to rest up and get prepared for the back-to-back this weekend in Texas against Dallas and Houston.