Chris Kern | @chriskern11
Result: MEM 82 SAS 96
The Grizzlies came into game two needing to play much better than they did in game one if they wanted to have a chance. Mike Conley got the game started off with two nice jumpers to get the Grizzlies to 5 points. After that the team really struggled to hit any shots. The Spurs got off to a quick 17-10 lead mid-way through the first quarter. Zach Randolph and Andrew Harrison both hit quick buckets to get it started for the backups but then struggled brutally, similar to the way they did in game one. The Grizzlies left the Spurs open for many shots but luckily they weren’t falling. They had a chance to make a quick run to end the first quarter, but a few turnovers and bad plays halted that as they ended the quarter trailing 29-16. The team shot 6-25 in the first quarter taking a lot of bad shots.
The Spurs got off to a nice start to the second quarter extending the lead. Tony Parker and the Spurs hit some shots to even further the lead as they were up 48-23 midway through the second. Zach Randolph and Mike Conley were the only two who could make any plays offensively in the first half, but the Grizzlies never got anything going as they trailed 56-37.
They turned up the intensity in the second half getting it as close as four points during the fourth quarter. They started running the offense through Randolph for stretches in the second half and they were successful doing so as it was a key part of the run. The Grizzlies’ started to hit a few shots but more importantly, they started playing a lot harder and they never gave up.
Mike Conley ended the third quarter with a big three to cut the lead to ten. He then went out and hit another three to open the fourth followed by a Marc Gasol and-one to cut the Spurs lead all the way down to four with 10:07 remaining.
The Spurs quickly hit two shots to get the lead back out to nine which put quite a bit of pressure on the Grizzlies. Carter and Randolph hit back to back buckets to cut it to five but it wouldn’t get any closer as the Spurs pulled away. Kawhi Leonard made some big shots down the stretch to get the Spurs lead back to double figures. Leonard’s play also created open threes for his teammates which helped seal it.
The Grizzlies ended up falling 96-82 and will go back to Memphis in a must win game three. Mike Conley lead the way for the Grizzlies scoring 24 on 8-18 shooting including 4-8 from three point range, he also had eight assists for the game. Marc Gasol really struggled to get into any rhythm as he ended up with 12 points on 4-15 shooting to go along with six rebounds and three assists. Vince Carter added a dozen points including two made three pointers. James Ennis played well in the second half even though it may not seem like it on the stat sheet. He finished with 7 points and 8 rebounds but he brought so much more than that in the Grizzlies comeback attempt. Zach Randolph shot the ball a lot better in this game than he did in game one finishing the day 9-18 shooting with 18 points and also added 10 rebounds.
The Grizzlies shot 37.8% from the field including 7-27 from three point range, while the Spurs shot 45.9% with 9-23 from three. The Spurs out rebounded the Grizzlies 39-35. The Grizzlies shot 13-15 from the free throw line while the Spurs shot 31-32 from the line. The Spurs had 16 turnovers which was a big part of the Grizzlies comeback attempt, while Memphis had 10 turnovers.
The Grizzlies played an awful first half and being able to battle back and have a chance to win the game is pretty remarkable. The team had great effort in the second half and if they can go back to Memphis and play with that same energy and can hit their shots I feel that they can win a game or two and really put some pressure on the Spurs.