After dispersing the Spurs in six games in the first round of the NBA Playoffs, the Memphis Grizzlies had people turning their heads. Now after beating the Oklahoma City Thunder in game one, people are beginning to wonder: are the Grizzlies for real? The Memphis Grizzlies have already done enough in the playoffs to make a name for themselves and change their reputation as a perennial bottom feeder. Playing without one of their best players, Rudy Gay, and beating the Spurs was quite impressive.
Yesterday’s victory better have put the Thunder on alert and get them to step up their game for game two. Memphis won 114 to 101, holding a 13-point lead going into the fourth and keeping it that way throughout the last quarter of the game. Zach Randolph had a playoff-career-high with 34 points to go along with 10 Z-bounds. In addition to Randolph’s stud performance, his post partner, Marc Gasol dropped 20 points and 13 boards. The Grizzlies dominated the post and came out with a big win, despite big games from Kevin Durant (33 pts, 11 rebs) and Russell Westbrook (29 pts, 8 rebs, 6 asts). Randolph, the team’s postseason MVP thus far, had this to say after the game about his team:
“We believe…We definitely believe. Our confidence is up high. I tell the guys we can compete and play with anybody.”
Despite losing game one, I am still going to go with the Thunder in this series. They have too much talent and I think Perkins and Ibaka will get mad enough to throw a fork in the Grizzlies post dominance. This series will come down to the wire especially after a game one win by Memphis, but I gotta go with my gut and pick the Thunder in 7.