The Memphis Grizzlies entered Friday night with a tough task. Facing the number one team in the Western Conference in the Utah Jazz, who had also won 17 straight home games at Vivint Arena in Utah. With the Grizzlies riding a three game winning, streak could that momentum get them past the Jazz on Friday night?
The Memphis Grizzlies got off to a slow start in the first quarter. The Jazz looked like the number one team in the NBA. Utah shot 62 percent from the field, and scored well in the paint, which is how they win their games. The Grizzlies trailed the Jazz 38-24 after one quarter in Utah.
After trailing by 14 heading into the second quarter, the Grizzlies would cut the Jazz lead down to nine, but would end up trailing by as much as 20. The Grizzlies were trying to find their footing against one of the best teams in the NBA. The Grizzlies couldn’t grab rebounds consistently, as the Jazz grabbed second chance opportunities left and right in the first half. The Grizzlies were out rebounded by the Jazz 30-22 in the first half. An end of the first half Ja Morant three-pointer left the Grizzlies trailing the Utah 66-50.
The third quarter, the Grizzlies found themselves down as much as 21, and as things were looking bleak, and there was no rhythm or flow - Ja Morant happened for Memphis. Sparking a 12-2 run for the Grizzlies, and clawing Memphis back into this game, Morant was fearless, going to the rim without hesitation against Defensive Player of the Year in Rudy Gobert - Morant was supreme in setting his teammates up, and finding a flow for the Grizzlies. The Grizzlies cut that 21 point lead by the Jazz down to nine at the end of the third. The Jazz led the Grizzlies 88-79 heading to the fourth.
The Grizzlies would continue their brilliant effort in a comeback effort behind star Ja Morant. The Grizzlies would end up falling behind by as much as 17 points, and then rally once more in the final five minutes of the fourth quarter. Unable to get past the nine point mark, the Grizzlies did that in the final three minutes. Unfortunately for the Grizzlies their rally would fall three points short.
The Jazz defeated the Grizzlies 117-114 on Friday night, snapping the Grizzlies three game winning streak, and extending their home winning streak to 18 games in a row. The Grizzlies will be back in action tomorrow night against this same Jazz team.
Ja Morant - 32 points, 11 assists, 11/21 FG
Dillon Brooks - 22 points, 9/16 FG