Published: Mon, April 24, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Grizzlies will need more from ol' Zach Randolph vs. Spurs

Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol reacts during the second half of Game 3 in the team's NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the San Antonio Spurs on Thursday, April 20, 2017, in Memphis, Tenn.

Grizzlies center, Marc Gasol, was the star of the home team.

The San Antonio Spurs were rolling through the first two games of their best-of-seven, first-round series against the Memphis Grizzlies. San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich pulled his starters early in the fourth quarter, and most did not return as Memphis stretched its lead to as much as 22 points.

The Spurs, who still lead two games to one, saw their streak of 10 consecutive post-season wins over the Grizzlies end.

It's just normal to see the numbers of Giannis Antetokounmpo with 26.0 points, 11.5 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game.

The victor of that series will take on the victor between the third-seeded Raptors and sixth-seeded Bucks in the second round, and this matchup could go the distance of seven games based on the results of the first two.

On the other hand, if the Spurs figure things out in a meaningful way, the Grizzlies could be in trouble, because as I said they don't have any more tricks up their sleeves. Leonard scored 15 points, and Parker had 14 to lead the Spurs.

Spurs guard Tony Parker did not register a single point or assist in the 18:58 he was on the court in Game 3. He has shot 67 percent from the field and is 32 of 32 from the free-throw line in the first three games.

The fouls were even at six apiece at the end of the first, although the Spurs did go to the line 11 times compared to four for Memphis.

For the Pacers, Paul George is playing superbly in the first two games averaging 30.5t points, 6.5 rebounds and 7.0 assists per game.

The Grizzlies needed all of his inspirational effort to withstand the Spurs' assault led by superstar Kawhi Leonard. Kawhi Leonard for the San Antonio Spurs was the first to score in the third quarter with a two-point shot. The Spurs seem like they will just grind up the Grizzlies who just don't have the firepower to be able to hang. Then he got the ball back on the right wing and hit a three-pointer.

Grizzlies guard Mike Conley said he was an option to take the final shot and that the San Antonio Spurs thought so, too, on a night when he scored a franchise-record 35 points.

If you aren't yet drowning in gravitas, we all watched a 58-second run in which Leonard scored eight points, stole the ball twice and changed the entire personality of the basketball game. The crowd roared its approval when Randolph was introduced and during the game they were serenading him with chants of "Z-Bo, Z-Bo, Z-Bo". The only other time that happened was on April 30, 2013, when the same three players - Randolph (25), Gasol (21) and Conley (20) - each scored 20 or more points in a win over the LA Clippers.

Like the Spurs, the Cavaliers can take a big step a toward potential first-round sweep Thursday night when they play at Indiana. Randolph knocked down step-back jumpers, hook shots and even threw in a rare dunk while grabbing eight rebounds. "I felt a lot better in the second half", Ibaka said.

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