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The Week-side Help: Week 14 - Wayne’s World

Recapping a week where young Grizzlies stepped up and the team - gasp - won three in a row!

Memphis Grizzlies v New Orleans Pelicans Photo by Layne Murdoch/NBAE via Getty Images

Week 14 Results

Los Angeles Lakers 114 @ Memphis Grizzlies 123 (14-28) Recap | Box Score

New York Knicks 99 @ Memphis Grizzlies 105 (15-28) Recap | Box Score

Sacramento Kings 88 @ Memphis Grizzlies 106 (16-28) Recap | Box Score

Memphis Grizzlies 104 (16-29) @ New Orleans Pelicans 111 Recap | Box Score

Week 14 Storylines

-Grizzlies notch a three-game winning streak for the first time since the first three games of the season.

-Wayne Selden, Jr. set a career-high in points, scoring 31 against the New Orleans Pelicans on Saturday night.

-Chandler Parsons’ and Mike Conley’s prolonged absences continue on as they continue to battle knee and heel injuries, respectively.

-Required Reading: GBB’s McCarty Maxwell had an excellent post this past week about JaMychal Green finding his footing again after starting the season injured | GBB’s Joe Mullinax, just in time for Z-Bo’s return to Memphis, told us why the memory of Zach Randolph is important for this city, but also why he had to leave.

Week 14 Thoughts

-As much as I’m rooting for better lottery chances, it was awesome to see Memphis win, convincingly at that, on Martin Luther King Day.

-This week was all about the young guys. Wayne Selden, Dillon Brooks, and Deyonta Davis looked great with the extra opportunity. Scouting matters for your lottery picks, but hitting on second rounders and UDFA’s is what builds your depth in the future.

-Wayne Selden had the game of his life against his first team, the Pelicans. 31 points on 16 shots is an incredible game, and it meant more cause we needed it most. The Grizz were decimated by injuries on Saturday night. Unexpected contributions are huge for surprise games like that. It’s a shame we didn’t win on his career night, but Selden deserves the praise.

-Deyonta.

-Davis.

-Is it a coincidence that the first winning streak for the Grizzlies since October 28th happened after Deyonta Davis gets his first career start? That’s a negative, bub. I’ve been a big fan of Deyonta for a while now and it looks like the increased playing time has lead to him putting it all together. He shot 68.4% from the field and averaged 1.5 blocks a game this week, and he’s still getting better.

-Dillon Brooks cooled off after his hot start. He still finds himself a starter with solid defense, but his jump shot has been inconsistent and unreliable since his debut. This week? He’s been fantastic. He averaged 17 points a night on 60% shooting from the field and 57.1% on three-pointers this week.

-James Ennis’s absence makes the heart grow fonder. He missed Saturday’s game and I was apoplectic.

-There might be four or five guys that no one in this league can guard one-on-one, and the Pelicans have two of them.

Official Permanent Lottery Watch of the Week

1/21 NBA Lottery Standings from tankathon.com

What the hell, Memphis. We were all settled in for the long haul of the tank and you go ahead and win not two, but THREE games in a row. Unacceptable.

After a 3-1 week, Memphis dropped from #4 to #5. Not the end of the world considering how many franchise altering players there seem to be in this draft class. But beware, there is less distance between the 11th and 5th spot (2.5 games) than the 5th and 1st spot (3 games). The winning streak is scary for that very reason. Please don’t fall out the top-10, Memphis. I beg of you.

Prospect of the Week

Mohamed Bamba, Center from Texas. The second he enters the league he will have one of, if not the longest wingspan in the NBA. He’s listed as 7’0” tall with a 7’9” wingspan. Absolutely absurd. He doesn’t play small, either. He uses every inch of his wingspan to block shots into the stands. He’s averaging 12.5 rebounds and a ridiculous 5.2 blocks per-36 minutes.

He’s not all blocks and wingspan, though. Mo Bamba tries to step out and shoot threes on occasion, but he needs a lot of improvement on his touch. His jumper is a little robotic and awkward, but Rudy Gobert that can stretch the floor would be a hell of a prize for anyone who misses out on DeAndre Ayton or Luka Doncic.

Performance of the Week

Wayne Selden vs NOP, 31 pts (11-16 FG, 5-7 3P, 4-4 FT), 2 reb, 2 ast, 2 TOs, -3 +/-

Wayne’s World! Okay, I just wanted to make that joke. It doesn’t work here, but hey, his name is Wayne too. That’s wild.

Wayne was artistry at work on Saturday. He was fantastic off-the-dribble, as the ball-handler in pick-and-rolls, and moved well without the ball. I legitimately did not even think a game like this from Selden was even possible. His calling card is his defense, not this crazy efficient sharpshooting offense.

Some extra context to this performance: the Pelicans have approximately 0 wing defenders. Darius Miller and Dante Cunningham couldn’t stop Selden from going off. Even Rajon Rondo and Anthony Davis on switches weren’t enough to contain Wayne. Also, single game plus-minuses should be taken with a whole shaker of salt. Wayne being a -3 in this game should be proof of that.

Week 15 Schedule and Preview

Philadelphia 76ers @ Memphis Grizzlies Mon. Jan 22 8:00 ET/7:00 CT

San Antonio Spurs @ Memphis Grizzlies Weds. Jan 24 8:00 ET/7:00 CT

Los Angeles Clippers @ Memphis Grizzlies Fri. Jan 26 8:00 ET/7:00 CT

Familiar foes this week, except for tonight’s game against the 76ers. Joel Embiid’s playing status feels up-in-the-air just about every night, but he should be good to go for Monday’s tilt. I’m as excited as can be to watch him play against Memphis. The Process is so much fun, man. I know in a year or two or three it’ll be cool to hate Joel Embiid, but don’t hate him. How could anyone. Just remember the good ole days once the Sixers win 8 Finals in a row and we get sick of them. Let’s just hope Markelle Fultz can put it all together, for his benefit.

Memphis is 1-5 on the season against the other two opponents, however. Memphis avoids Kawhi Leonard yet again, as he has been ruled out indefinitely as he still battles a relatively mysterious quad injury. He was the MVP favorite heading into the year, it’d be a genuine shame to see him miss the whole season.

As for the Clippers game, LOLOLOL Austin Rivers is so infinitely fightable that he doesn’t even have to dress to piss off the other team. I love that so much. Zach Randolph wouldn’t need a secret tunnel to go fight him though, he would do it in front of all the witnesses on center court, Chris Paul.

Have a good week, Memphis.

Follow @sbnGrizzlies