The Grizzlies went on a quick weekend tour through south and central Florida over the weekend that saw their 8 game winning streak come to an end. But while the team only pulled out a 1-1 record on the trip, their play should inspire confidence in the fanbase going forward. I was actually just happy they made it out of that shithole of a state without a mass herpes outbreak or being run off the road by some blind, geriatric, yankee retiree.
Friday @ Miami- The Heat are the hottest team in the league but the Grizz gave them everything they could handle right down to the wire. But with 24 seconds left and Miami up 1, Lebron James, who had been locked down for most of the game, knocked down a big 3 pointer to put the game away for good. Mark Gasol, who finished with 24 points, 9 boards, and 4 assists, posted one of his best all-around games of the season. Zach Randolph showed the toughness Memphians love, playing 37 minutes after injuring his ankle on the first play of the game. The Grizzlies were pretty much beat by a former fan-favorite. Shane Battier continued a hot shooting streak by draining four of five 3 pointers. Lionel Hollins did his best to dive fans into an apoplectic rage during the 4th quarter with some incredibly odd (for anyone but Lionel) substitution patterns. Mike Conley and Marc Gasol both sat the majority of the 4th quarter and putting defensive-liability Austin Daye on the best player in the world for an extended stretch. Gasol and Conley did not reenter the game until 5 minutes remaining in the game and Tony Allen sat until almost the 2 minute mark. Lionel does some great things as coach (obviously) but his substitution patterns make me want to punt a baby.
Sunday @ Orlando- The Magic are bad. Really, really bad. However, there have been times when Memphis would let a tough loss like Friday night snowball into mulitple losses. That didn't happen. The Grizzlies came out focused, firing on all cylinders, and absolutely smashed Orlando 108-82 in a total laugher. With Zach Randolph sitting out the game after spraining his ankle on the first play of Friday's game against the Heat, Marc Gasol dominated. He only had 12 points (5 of 6 shooting) but channelled his inner point guard dropped 11 dimes, finding cutters and open shooters all over the court. He once again obliterated Magic center Nikola Vucevic, holding him to 6 points and only 4 rebounds. In the 36 minutes Gasol was on the court, the Grizzlies were plus-31. Ed Davis also took advantage of some expanded minutes and put a double-double (10 points, 10 boards). The game was out of hand for most of the second half, giving bench guys like Tony Wroten, Jon Leuer, and Dexter Pittman extended minutes.
Grizzlies Tweet of the Weekend Not from @HydeParkSwag
To say Grizzlies fans did not approve of the ESPN crew outside of Bill Simmons was an understatement.
Magic Johnson wants Lebrons D soooooooooo bad he can taste it.— Wes Bevis (@WesBevis) March 2, 2013
Grizzlies Article of the Weekend Not from this blog
Fran Blineberry of NBA.com's Hang Time blog posted an interview with Marc Gasol about his work with the kids at St. Jude. You can take a look at that here.
John Schumann, also with Hang Time posted a sit-down Q&A with Grizzlies VP of Basketball Ops, John Hollinger. Check that out here.
Grizzlies Tweet of the Weekend from @HydeParkSwag
I love Tony Allen but he has never seen a lane to the basket he feels is too narrow to get through.
I love all the community service Tony Allen does but he will never give a sex ed talk.He's never pulled out of anything.— Hyde Park Swag (@HydeParkSwag) March 2, 2013
A Look at the Standings
The Grizzlies are 39-19 and remain 4th in the Western Conference standings. They are 2 games behind the Clippers and 2 games up on Denver.
Wednesday v. Portland- The first of four straight games against teams with a sub. 500 record. The Grizz are 0-1 against Portland this season with an 86-84 home loss on January 4th. Z-Bo sat out the game with flu-like symptoms that apparently infected the entire team during the 4th quarter, in which they only scored 12 points. Portland is on a bit of a skid, posting a 4-10 record since February 1st, including a streak of 8 consecutive losses. The key to this game will be in the post where the Grizzlies may be short-handed with both Randolph and Darrell Arthur listed as day-to-day from injuries over the weekend. The Blazers have their own All-Star power forward in Lamarcus Aldridge plus somehow crotch-punching Frenchie Nicolas Batum and first team all-meh player Wesley Matthews always seem to give the Grizzlies trouble.The W
-Coach Hollins was named the NBA Western Conference Coach of the Month for February. It was his second time this season (November) and his fourth time in his career to receive the award.
-Ex-rays were negative on Zach Randolph's injured ankle. He remains day-to-day after toughing out Friday's game and sitting out Sunday night. With a few days off before taking on Portland Wednesday, I wouldn't expect him to miss much more action.
-Darrell Arthur is also day to day after taking a nasty spill against Orlando. Arthur came down hard on his back and whip-lashed his head back against the floor. Arthur says he his back and neck are sore but his headache is gone and he has experienced no concussion-like symptoms.
-Former Grizzlies draft pick Josh Selby was waived by the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday.
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