Memphis Grizzlies Giving the San Antonio Spurs All They Can Handle, Should Kawhi Leonard and Company Be Worried?Read Now
Who would've thought that the Spurs vs Grizzlies series would gives us the best game of the first round. After the first two games in San Antonio it looked like this series was headed for a quick sweep, but after two games in Memphis the series is all tied up. Memphis has always given the Spurs a tough time in the first round of the playoffs. A few years back when the Grizzlies were an 8 seed and the Spurs were a 1 seed the Grizzlies pulled off the unthinkable upset winning that series, so why not this one.
The Grizzlies turned the ball over 23 times, however beat the Spurs in almost every other team statistic. On the boards the Grizzlies dominated, they shot the ball at a higher percentage, they killed the Spurs on the fast break, and at one point in the game they went on a 23-4 run, somehow the Spurs only lost on a buzzer-beater in OT, though. The reason the Spur didn't lose by 20, Kawhi Leonard. A man unconscious, Kawhi Leonard carried the Spurs out of this huge hole and brought them back into the game. In the final 5 minutes of the 4th quarter Leonard had 16 points, the rest of his team had zero. He was literally carrying the Spurs back single-handedly, no one could stop him, and he forced OT. On the other side of the court Mike Conley was also having a career night living up to the massive $150 million contract he signed this offseason. Conley finished with 35 points, on 13/23 shooting, and he dished out 8 assists. Kawhi would finish with a playoff career high 43 points, on 14/30 shooting, hitting 7 three pointers in the game.
Kawhi was hitting every clutch shot in OT. The Spurs looked down and out, they were playing the foul game, and Kawhi hit every shot he needed to keep the Spurs alive. Unfortunately, he left a little too much time on the clock for the Grizzlies to run a final play. Conley had the ball looking like he was going to go iso for the win since he had the hot hand all game. Conley passed it off to Marc Gasol though, a move I absolutely loved, Gasol dribbled up to the top of the key, put up a fadeaway jumper over LaMarcus Aldridge, buckets, Grizzlies win. All that effort from Kawhi Leonard for nothing, guy has an all time great performance and losses, that has got to suck. I still give the Grizzlies a 1% chance at winning this series, but it's cool to see a team that's been together forever with this rookie head coach giving the Spurs all they can handle. Would love to see Fizzdale upset Pop, even though that'd take a minor miracle, the Grizzlies have done it before, can they do it again.