The Memphis Grizzlies are back to playing excellent and consistent basketball, especially on the defensive end of the court. The Grizzlies earned a 131-107 victory over the Charlotte Hornets, their fourth straight victory and another decisive win that allowed the starters to get some needed rest in the fourth quarter. Ja Morant was efficient once again with 23 points and 8 assists in just 27 minutes of play, but a few others stood out on the evening and showed they are continuing to bounce back into form.
Let’s hand out a few grades from a fun night.
Desmond Bane - B+
Yes, it is fair to point out Desmond Bane has struggled from three since returning from his toe injury in late December. However, last night Bane once again showed the growth in his game as he still contributed to the Grizzlies big win. Bane score 19 points shooting 50% from the field, but also contributed 11 rebounds (a career hight) and four assists. He and Steven Adams led all Grizzlies with a +24 on the evening, proving that he can still be a significant reason the Grizzlies play well even if his shot from distance is still getting back to normal.
Steven Adams - B+
Sure, Adams has been frequently discussed in report cards as of late because of how excellent he has been in recent games. He truly continues to be a difference maker, whether it is going head-to-head with other excellent centers as he did over the weekend or dominating in a game when it is expected. The Grizzlies continue to be the best rebounding team in the league, and Adams is now among the best all around rebounders in the league. This is a big area to have an advantage in as the Grizzlies continue to struggle from three. While Adams may not average 19 boards per game moving forward like he has over his past four contests, he still is proving his worth as one of the most impactful centers in the league each night.
Xavier Tillman - A
With Brandon Clarke out with a hip injury, Xavier Tillman once again has stepped into a needed role and is once again delivering when his number is called. Tillman stuffed the staff sheet on Wednesday night, 10 points, six boards, two assists, two steals, and a block. The Grizzlies clearly had a size advantage in this game, and Tillman was able to add to that depth with another notable performance in the pinch. Though most of his action has been through playing with the hustle as of late, one reason the Grizzlies have some of the best front court depth in the NBA is due to Santi Aldama and Tillman being ready to step into a bigger role when needed and stand out with their production.