The Oklahoma City Thunder defeated the Memphis Grizzlies, 121-114. OKC once again used a huge 1st half, scoring 73 points in building a 20 point lead. Unfortunately, OKC saw that lead dwindle to a single possession late in the 4th (unlike their last game), and it was only through timely shooting via Paul George and Carmelo Anthony, set up by Russell Westbrook’s triple-double, that OKC was able to hang on.
Out of respect for the Grizzlies franchise and fanbase, as well as the fact that I’m flat out fatigued by the 1st 2⁄3 of this season, I’ll be brief.
This game encapsulated everything that is both right and wrong with the Thunder this season. A dynamic team scored 73 with ease, yet allowed a cratering team to shoot 51% from the floor and 52% from 3-point range for the game to make it a far too close contest. Carmelo was largely responsible for a number of bad possessions in the 2nd half, yet hit the dagger three late to all but cinch it. Alex Abrines once again started, but this time was pulled in favor of a more dynamic bench line-up, which scored 40 on the night.
Terrence Ferguson, who went from starter to doghouse in about 30 seconds earlier this month, stepped up to nail two huge threes to hold off the Grizz. And Westbrook, once again struggling with his shot, did his best LeBron James impression, producing 15 assists, yet still not able to consistently hit the shots he was hitting a year ago.
We need a break. We all need a break. The home stretch starts in a week.