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Report Card: Watanabe Fever breaks out as Grizzlies top Pacers

Catch it!

NBA: Memphis Grizzlies-Media Day Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports

The Memphis Grizzlies won their second game of the preseason Saturday night against the Indiana Pacers and Tyreke Evans. Both sides sat their key starters allowing their younger players opportunities to fight for roster spots.

One young player stole the night-

October 6th is now Yuta Watanabe night in Memphis.

Well maybe not officially, but Yuta owned the night. After a very shaky debut Friday night against the Hawks, Watanabe more than redeemed himself hitting a three to send the game to overtime.

In case you missed the dunk....

He electrified the crowd with his energy on both sides of the ball while proving that his two-way contract looks like a good deal for the franchise. He finished the night with 11 points, shooting 5 for 7 from the field, with three rebounds and a blocked shot. Combine the efficient stat line with his energy and game tying shot and Yuta grades out with the highest grade of the night at A+.

Two other players graded highly as well. . .

We have a Wayne Selden Jr. sighting! Selden played as if his roster spot was on the line, and based on his previous two outings, it very well could have been. If not his roster spot, Selden was at least playing his way out of a deep wing rotation and did he ever step it up against the Pacers.

Selden got the start and made the most of his 27 minutes on the floor. He showed the very reason the team has hung on to him, scoring 16 points and playing well defensively. The most surprising facet of his game tonight was his playmaking, ending the night with nine assists. Selden needed this night some kind of bad.


Garrett Temple making his case for a starting spot. Is there a battle for the starting two guard spot between Temple and Dillon Brooks? If so, Temple made a good case for himself tonight. While shooting 3 for 8 doesn't seem like a good night, Temple wasn't brought here to fill up the points column. His defense and veteran leadership are the qualities that led to his arrival in Memphis and those were on display in this game leaving him tied for the highest plus-minus at +10.


Quick Grades

Jaren Jackson Jr. gets a B. Although he led the team in scoring, he still looked very much the part of a rookie on the floor. He was able to show his offensive skill set, hitting threes and putting the defender on the block, but he didn't rebound well and struggled at times defensively.

JaMychal Green follows his great night against the Hawks with a D performance against the Pacers. Green played seven minutes and managed to rack up three fouls and give up a million rebounds to Domantas Sabonis. Green’s spot as the starter probably is not in jeopardy at the moment, but tonight was not a bright moment for last season’s most consistent Grizz.

Shelvin Mack gets a B and possibly the lead backup point guard spot. He tied with Temple for the highest plus minus on the night as well as pouring in 7 assists. Jevon Carter gets a C+ for his difference making defense at the end of the game, covering up his poor shooting night.

MarShon Brooks came back to earth and receives a D while Dillon Brooks struggled his way to a C, looking overwhelmed and forcing the issue at times.