Of course they did.
In what was a perfect way to end this random and stupid season, Memphis lit the Warriors up like a Christmas tree in April, scoring 86 points in the first half and making 20 total threes (a new franchise record) on their way to a victory in the finale of the 2018-2019 campaign for the Grizzlies.
The win puts Memphis in a three-way tie for the 9th best odds in the Lottery, meaning a coin toss on the horizon that could directly impact the next decade of Grizzlies basketball.
It’s really the only way for such a dumb and disappointing season to end.
Here are some takeaways from game #82-
Jevon Carter hopes everyone only remembers tonight.
A season of drastically poor shooting ended about as well as Jevon Carter could have hoped in this game. Jevon shot a scintillating 8-12 from beyond the arc on his way to a 32 point performance. He dominated a weakened Golden State back court, showing off a confidence that most guys playing as poorly offensively as Carter has usually don’t have. It paid off today, though - Jevon was the Grizzlies leading scorer.
Who knows what development can be realistically expected from Carter in year two. Tonight was at least evidence he is physically capable of putting the ball in the basket. There was some doubt there for a while.
Delon Wright is a Grizzlies record holder
For the third straight game, Delon Wright posted a triple double. That has never occurred over any such stretch of contests in Memphis Grizzlies history. Yes, it’s a meaningless game, and yes, stats during this time of year should be taken with a huge grain of salt. But Wright has taken to the role of team leader and main facilitator really well the last few games. On a good team, he’s probably a key reserve and not a leading man. Yet his ability to create and attack the paint on both ends shows the value in his game that the Grizzlies saw when they made him a focal point of the Marc Gasol trade.
In a world of uncertainty, I think it is safe to bet that Delon will be back in Memphis next season.
- Ivan Rabb and Yuta Watanabe didn’t score as well as the rest of the team. A combined 4-17 from the floor in a game Golden State didn’t try too hard to defend is a bit concerning. But if you’re not going to give credit to great showings, struggles should be given the side eye as well.
- The Grizzlies attempted 46 threes. What? Really? Those Grizzlies? Perhaps it’s a look in to the future - it probably isn’t - but the offense has been much more focused of tempo and long range scoring in the wake of the roster overturn from a couple months ago. If the front office and coaching staff stays the same (hopefully it does not), this could be the norm more often than not in 2019-2020.
The Grizzlies ended the season very well, picking up a big win over a team that wasn’t interested in winning. The victory is overshadowed to an extent, however, by the two bad losses that preceded it. Win just one of those two games, and you’re the 9th team in the lottery, guaranteed to convey or get in to the top-4. Now, you must wait and see your fate.
Given how the season that just ended went down, there’s probably no other way for this off-season to get under way.