Chris Kern | @chriskern11
Result: MEM 103 SAS 116
The Grizzlies headed into game five with momentum after winning both games at home, and would need to use that to their advantage because winning on the road in San Antonio is very tough to do. The Grizzlies got off to a nice start getting up 10-4 which included a James Ennis corner three and double pump dunk. Manu Ginobili really stepped up though getting six straight points (and his first points of the series) to tie the game up at 14. The Grizzlies struggled to score the rest of the quarter but they did enough to keep the score tied at 23 at the end of the first quarter. Marc Gasol had seven points in the first, while the team shot 8-18.
The Spurs got out to a nice start in the second quarter, making some shots to get out to a 33-29 lead as the Grizzlies tried to make some plays of their own, taking a 38-37 lead midway through the second. The Spurs really played well the rest of the way as they ended the half up 55-49. The Grizzlies shot 17-36 and 4-10 from three in the first half while the Spurs shot 20-38 and 7-15 from three. James Ennis had 11 points while Kawhi Leonard led all scorers with 12.
The Spurs dominated most of the third quarter. They hit many shots getting up by as much as 18 points. Despite Tony Parker making some nice plays, Mike Conley was fantastic in the quarter as he scored a ridiculous 17 points to keep Memphis in the game. LaMarcus Aldridge was also much more aggressive in the quarter and not just with his scoring, he seemed to battle much more on the glass as well. The Spurs ended the quarter with an 87-76 lead.
The Grizzlies got five quick points from a three pointer by JaMychal Green and a Mike Conley reverse layup. The offense was fantastic as they shot a very high percentage but they never were able to cut into the lead much more because they couldn’t get any stops. Patty Mills didn’t seem to miss from behind the arc as he ended with 20 points as he shot 5-7 from three. Mike Conley went to the bench down five with about Seven minutes left in the game and the hit a couple shots to keep it at five which included an Andre Harrison three pointer to make the score 100-95 but the Spurs just keep on scoring which led to them pulling away late. The Grizzlies got a couple garbage time buckets as the final score was 116-103 with San Antonio coming out on top.
The Grizzlies finished 37-72 from the field and 9-22 from three while the Spurs shot 42-80 from the field and 14-28 from behind the arc. No other stats really stood out but down the stretch the Spurs were giving more effort and getting extra possessions which is something you can never allow them to do if you want to have a chance to beat them. The Grizzlies had five guys in double figures led by Mike Conley who had 26 points on 10-17 shooting which included 2-4 from three and he also had six assists. The Spurs also had five guys in double figures led by Kawhi Leonard at 28 on 9-16 shooting as he made three three pointers and also had six assists. The Memphis Grizzlies have to play much better defensively to have a chance in game six. But going back to Memphis they should have a very good chance to win, but an even better chance if they can contain the Spurs role players such as Patty Mills. The Grizzlies also need their stars to play much better. Winning a game six at home and then going back to San Antonio for a game seven is going to be very tough but if this team plays physical and makes some shots I think they can pull it off.