Grizz Gaming entered week nine of the NBA 2K League with immense pressure to perform and take their next steps towards making the playoffs. League experts have predicted that nine wins isn’t a safe record to make the playoffs, and sitting at .500 (5-5) entering week nine, Grizz Gaming would need to perform as they had two very tough opponents.
Their two opponents this past week were in similar situations as them - fighting for a playoff spot. Memphis would take on Mavs Gaming on Tuesday night, and then end the week on Thursday night against Blazer5 Gaming.
Grizz Gaming Falls Flat:
Memphis didn’t have the greatest start to week nine. Grizz fell in a sweep to Mavs Gaming in their first game since their bye week. Rust showed, and the Grizz couldn’t recover from back-to-back slow starts to a very gritty Mavs team.
Memphis in game two slowly worked towards looking like themselves following a 8 point game one loss, the Grizz pushed the Mavs harder in game two. Memphis adjusted, but the Mavs just made one or two more plays in the closing seconds of regulation to take the series in a sweep, pushing Memphis to 5-6 on the season setting one of Grizz Gaming’s biggest series of the season against Blazer5 Gaming on Thursday.
Wow, what a tough loss for @GrizzGaming (5-6) to Mavs Gaming (9-4) by a score of 57-52. A sweep, the Grizz will be back in action on Thursday night as it’ll be a must win game against Blazer5 Gaming.— Grizzly Bear Blues (@sbnGrizzlies) July 8, 2020
Grizz Gaming Bounces Back
This past Thursday night, a matchup with arguably one of the most successful 2K League teams to date faced Memphis in Blazer5 Gaming. As a team that started 4-0 then went on a losing streak, Portland was hungry. Two hungry teams, one looking to sustain their success in the lead, and across the way was a team on the rise in Grizz Gaming.
Enormous pressure sat on Memphis’ shoulders Thursday night as they hosted Portland. Memphis, unlike previous game one performances this season, jumped on Portland first. Following a slow start in game one, the Grizz recovered in the second quarter by separating themselves from Portland. Holding a 13 point advantage at the half, the Grizz took off from that point - winning game one by 50 points. A game that felt like the Grizz could do no wrong, was followed by a game 2 that would take place on the Blazer5 servers.
In a game two in which Memphis led for three fourths of the game, would come to a crashing finish, but a heart to heart conversation galvanized the team. Grizz Gaming led majority of game two, until the fourth quarter. After hold a 13 point lead, the Grizz couldn’t catch a break in the second half. Portland forced Grizz Gaming star guard Vandi to drive the paint, and make mistakes in the fourth.
Following the game two collapse, a conversation took place between Vandi and Center Goofy.
My favorite moment from last night was this exchange with @Goofy757__ and @ImVandii. This is how you continue progressing and lead. Two teammates that care about one another and the team. @GrizzGaming went on to win game 3 following this.. pic.twitter.com/C4wYv96xvm— Brendan Smart (@bsmart21) July 10, 2020
Following that conversation, Memphis was able to overcome a slow start in game three, and take out the Blazers in three games, as Memphis moved back up to .500 (6-6).
Grizz Gaming will face another gauntlet this week, taking on two of the hottest teams in the 2K League right now. Wednesday night Memphis will take on NetsGC, and their star rookie Point Guard Choc. Then, will face a hot Jazz Gaming team on Friday night.
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