Grizzlies Stay Professional Against Inferior Squads


The Memphis Grizzlies came into last week well-rested, having only played two games in the previous seven days.

The extra downtime paid off, as the Grizz steamrolled their opponents to the tune of a 3-0 week, defeating the Clippers, Pistons and Hornets all rather easily.


Professional. That’s what last week was for the Grizzlies. There were the typical highlights and Ja Morant MVP chants that have become staples for this team.

Most importantly, though, the Grizz handled business against inferior opponents.

The Grizz were able to lock in both offensively and defensively when needed, and the only real blemish of the week was allowing the Hornets to rally from a 35-point deficit to make things interesting on Saturday.

Even then, though, Memphis was able to make get to their spots and the big plays in the final minutes to never allow Charlotte to make it a one-possession game.


Last week exclusively featured wins against teams the Grizzlies should beat. Still, it should serve as a different sort of excitement for Grizz fans.

Great teams know how to coast through regular-season games. They lock in when they need to, keep the game close, and flip a switch in winning time. This kind of approach can lead to bad losses and a stressed-out fanbase, and it definitely isn’t the most enjoyable form of basketball.

But it also shows that a team knows how to win– and this young Grizzlies team is showing that it has learned quickly how to do just that.

In the Grizzlies’ toughest game this week against the Clippers, they methodically built a lead before breaking the game open in the third quarter. Against Detroit, they built a large lead, coasted for two quarters, and then put them away in the fourth. Against Charlotte, they built a massive lead, blew it, and then stay composed and made the right plays down the stretch.

Last week’s games placed an emphasis on what the Grizz have shown all year. No matter what the situation, this team has learned how to win.


The Grizzlies’ role players continue to shine bright in their respective moments. The team had at least five players finish with double-digit points in all three games.

Desmond Bane has been spectacular all season. Ziaire Williams continues to expand his game. De’Anthony Melton is back to his game-wrecking ways. Steven Adams and Brandon Clarke both are both thriving as mismatches. Memphis’ chemistry is unrivaled, and it’s paying massive dividends.

The Grizzlies’ three point shooting was much improved in the last three games. While the Grizz have been in the bottom half of the league in three-point percentage this season (34.1%), they shot a strong 39% from deep last week. If the Grizzlies can find enough consistency to shoot just around the league average of 34.9% from three, they will become an even bigger threat in the West.


The Grizzlies’ free-throw woes are becoming a serious area of concern. They’re 28th in the league this season in free-throw percentage at 73.4% and shot an abysmal 69% this week. While they still managed to win, their 13 missed free throws in Charlotte almost cost them the game.

That simply will not cut it in the playoffs.


Memphis only has two games this week heading into the all-star break. The Grizz should stay perfect in February, as they are likely motivated to defeat both the Pelicans and Trail Blazers. After that, Bane and Morant will look to take over All-Star Weekend!

About Nathan Qualls

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