Zach Randolph bounced back after a couple poor outings for 28 points, 14 rebounds and two steals on 8-of-17 shooting, and also hit 12-of-16 free throws as the Grizzlies beat the Thunder 88-84 in OKC to win Game 5 and take the series 4-1, advancing to the Western Conference Finals.
This is the Grizzlies' first trip to the WCF and they'll face the winner of the Spurs-Warriors series. Randolph missed a pair of free throws with 10 seconds left and a two-point lead, but Kevin Durant wasn't even close with the wide-open jumper he created for himself. Mike Conley had 13 points and 11 dimes, Marc Gasol hit some big shots late to finish with 10 points and seven rebounds, and Tony Allen added 11 points, a huge, late 3-point play and stellar defense in the win.
Marc Gasol scored 23 points with 11 boards and six blocks during Monday's 103-97 overtime win over the Thunder in 48 minutes.
They were down 17 points in the second quarter and made a quick comeback to close the first half and start the second half. The Grizzlies took a commanding lead thanks to their 44 points in the paint and 25-of-29 shooting from the charity stripe. Gasol hit several clutch mid-range jumpers in this game and he's making a case as the best big man left in the playoffs. Zach Randolph wasn't too shabby either, scoring 23 points with 12 boards and three assists in 40 minutes.
Mike Conley shot 7-of-21 from the field for 24 points with three boards, five assists, four steals, four 3-pointers and one turnover in 49 minutes during Game 4's victory over the Thunder on Monday.
His offense has really taken off throughout the year. It all started back in October when Conley hit 2.0 triples per game on 70 percent shooting from downtown in the preseason and it has carried over since. He's active on both ends of the floor and he'll be off the board in the first 20 picks of fantasy drafts next year.
Marc Gasol led Memphis with 20 points, nine rebounds, four assists and two blocks in Saturday's 87-81 win vs. the visiting Thunder.
The victory gives Memphis a 2-1 lead in the series, though they were out-rebounded and nearly coughed up a late lead despite holding OKC to just 36.4 percent shooting. Gasol's 18.5 points per game in the playoffs rank him second among centers, trailing only Brook Lopez (22.3), with Roy Hibbert (13.5) as the nearest competition among centers still in the playoffs.
Mike Conley hit 11-of-22 shots and two 3-pointers for 26 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists and a steal, just missing a triple-double in Tuesday's Game 2 win over the Thunder in OKC.
Conley was fantastic tonight and clearly enjoys not having to deal with Russell Westbrook in this series. Marc Gasol came through with 24 points, five boards, five assists, two steals and a block, Zach Randolph added 15 points and eight boards, while Tony Allen had 12 points, seven rebounds and five steals, despite shooting just 4-of-13 on the night. Game 3 is in Memphis on Saturday, where the Grizzlies will try to hold their newfound home-court advantage.
ESPN's Chris Broussard reports that the Nets would have interest in Lionel Hollins if the Grizzlies do not retain him as head coach.
Broussard has been a mouthpiece for the Nets organization and a lot his reports have not been accurate, so take this with a tablespoon of salt. Before this report, Broussard reported the Nets had interest in Doc Rivers if he was let go, but the Celtics have no intention of firing one of the best coaches in basketball. It's not clear what Brooklyn is looking for in a next head coach, but they're doing a good job of trying to get in the headlines after a first round playoff exit.
Tony Allen appeared to tweak a hamstring late in Tuesday's Game 2 win, finishing with 12 points, seven rebounds and four steals on 4-of-13 shooting.
Allen played very tough defense on Kevin Durant and company tonight and the Grizzlies will need his D the rest of the way. The injury doesn't appear to be serious and for now, we're expecting him to play in Saturday's Game 3.