Most end-of-the-season games don’t really matter to most teams. They’re typically either resting up for the playoffs, or full-on tanking for the draft. The Grizzlies and Pistons are in a unique situation. Detroit is fighting for their playoff hopes while Memphis is playing to convey their pick.
While Memphis’ injury list is a mile long, Detroit came into the contest with a banged up Blake Griffin. Griffin had missed a few games with a knee injury but has played last few games with Detroit’s playoff hopes hanging by a thread.
A sloppy, turnover fest led to a Pistons victory over the Grizzlies, 100-93.
Here are some quick hitters:
Since being signed off the streets, Tyler Zeller has continued to impress with a physical style of play that Memphis was lacking in the wake of Valanciunas’ injury. He’s played three games with the Grizzlies and has scored double digits in all three. His hustle and physicality was key in Memphis establishing their early lead. While that same physicality also led to Zeller fouling out in the fourth quarter, it’s still nice to see someone bringing it down in the post.
18 games. The Grizzlies have had lost 18 games this year when having held a double digit lead. That is a totally unacceptable number, and loss number 18 could be hugely damaging to Memphis’ hopes to convey. Turnovers were the story of this latest collapse, Memphis committed 21 of them to Detroit’s 9. Whether a coaching change is the solution or not, something needs to be done. To have so many large leads blown so often is just bad for everyone.
Bruno Caboclo has been my favorite part of the second half of this season. From “being two years away from being two years away”, to becoming a regular contributor, Bruno has grown by leaps and bounds with this opportunity. His combination of length, athleticism and shooting ability have been beneficial to Memphis given their injury troubles. Bruno will be one of Memphis’ more intriguing players heading into next season, assuming the Grizzlies decide to keep him around. (They should.)
Memphis plays their final game of the season tomorrow night when they host the Golden State Warriors.