The Memphis Grizzlies lost to the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday night and came into the Forum on Friday looking to get back in the winning column against the Los Angeles Clippers. The Grizzlies were missing Tyreke Evans and Ben McLemore due to injury, in addition to the usual suspects.
The game started fast for the Memphis Grizzlies, Dillon Brooks scored the first four points on the first two possessions. After Jarell Martin missed a jumper, the recovered the offensive rebound and Andrew Harrison hit a three to jump out to 7-0 start for the Grizzlies. The Clippers came back and continued to attack the rim, getting easy buckets on breakdowns by the defense of the Grizzlies. Dillon Brooks was feeling it in the first quarter, scoring six points in the first five minutes of the game.
The defense for the Grizzlies only got worse throughout the first quarter. They repeatedly let the Clippers players get right to the rim. The Grizzlies had a lot of open looks and just kept missing them. Marc Gasol missed a open three pointer, a open free throw line jumper, and a open layup. He really struggle throughout the first quarter, going just 2-6. Both teams did not shoot great throughout the first, both going 8-22 from the field. The Grizzlies did manage to play a little better defense towards the end of the quarter, managing to cut the Clippers lead to just four.
The second quarter started with much better offense for the Grizzlies. Ivan Rabb showed off his incredible passing skills with a couple pocket passes for easy buckets, tying the game. The turnovers in the game were becoming a real problem for the Grizzlies, lucky for them the Clippers were not capitalizing on every one of them. They were able to keep it close for that reason, after only scoring nine points in the first five minutes of the quarter.
The Clippers were able to capitalize on enough to make it a eight point lead. After a timeout, the Grizzlies went on an 8-0 run and were able to tie the game back up pretty quickly. Dillon Brooks came up with a steal and a basket to give them the lead, while also staring down Blake Griffin. The Clippers came storming back with a run of their own and Lou Williams was scoring at will, giving them back the lead.
They were able to extend the lead back to nine after a Lou Williams three pointer, which also gave him 22 points in the game. The Grizzlies were never really able to recover from this run before halftime, with the Clippers leading by eight points at halftime.
After the half, the Grizzlies committed more turnovers, except this time it was the worst type turnover, ones that lead directly to fast breaks for the Clippers. Jarell Martin continued to work hard through the rough stretch, putting himself in the right spots and scoring a team high 13 points mid way through the third.
With Martin scoring and after a Andrew Harrison three, the Grizzlies were able to cut the lead down to just three points, but that would not last as the Clippers very quickly ran the lead back to eight points. The perimeter defense for the Grizzlies continued to be a problem, allowing the Clippers to score consistently from beyond the arc and get to the rim easily.
Even after the continued poor defensive play, the Clippers only had a seven point lead at the end of the third quarter.
The Clippers scored four straight points to open the fourth quarter, extending the lead to double digits. They continued to get to the basket and not only get fouls called but also finished through contact. The Grizzlies scored two points in the quarter with just over 8 minutes left and the Clippers extended their lead to fourteen. Marc Gasol had a huge block which led to a Jarell Martin dunk at the other end, which cut the lead to single digits.
Even after playing reasonable well through the mid part of the fourth quarter and a Marc Gasol triple double, the Grizzlies could not get the lead any closer than ten points. Marc Gasol had 13 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 assists with just under three minutes left to play in the fourth quarter. The Grizzlies would only score five points for the last four minutes of the game, the Clippers went on to win in Memphis 109-100.