Grizzlies are finally waking up
“Home Sweet Home” for the Grizzlies, who used this homecoming to end their four-game losing streak. After Ja Morant’s triple-double (27 points, 15 assists and 10 rebounds), Memphis came from 19 points behind the Pacers to win 112-110.
Because the Grizzlies took the game from the wrong end, they couldn’t stop Benedict Mathuri, who scored 12 points in two minutes to take a 15-point lead early in the 2nd quarter (38-23). Memphis is unrecognizable, and Indiana insists on Andrew Nembhard and Isaiah Jackson scoring an alley-oop to give them a 19-point lead (56-37). With four minutes left in the first half, the Fedex Forum was stunned.
The moment Morant chose to step out of his box. Transparent until then, he takes the matchup with singles, drives, a tap and then sends Jaren Jackson Jr. for a dunk. The Grizzlies trailed by just 12 points at halftime (62-50). That trend is confirmed when he returns from the locker room with a more aggressive defense and a Morant on the stove and in the grinder. We’ve only seen him, and he’s been involved in 12 of the Grizzlies’ 14 straight points (68-66). Everything has to be done again for the Pacers, but the waves follow each other, and at the very end of the 3rd quarter, David Roddy finally gives the Grizzlies the lead (80-79).
After two quarters, Memphis is on a 9-0 run (87-79) and only one player is trying to fight back, still Mathurin. Just like in the first half, he catches fire and scores 12 points in a row! It’s basketball, and the Grizzlies make a difference to take a 10-point lead (99-89). Unable to chain stops, Indiana would not score and instead it was Jackson Jr. and Morant who covered Mathurin and TJ McConnell to secure the victory (112-100). First in five games.
WHAT TO REMEMBER
Tribute to Tyre Nichols. Before the game, the Grizzlies community, players and coaches observed a minute of silence in memory of Tyre Nichols, who was lynched by five Memphis police officers. Emotion was running high, and it certainly factored into the Grizzlies’ lackluster start to the game.
Home series. It’s been a month since the Grizzlies lost at home, 8 straight wins. Second in the West, Ja Morant’s teammates have the best record in the NBA with 21 wins to 3 at home.
✅ Ja Morant. Like all his teammates, he took 20 minutes to get into his match, but then we only saw him. At the end of the first half, it really clicked and he scored his 5th triple-double of the season.
✅ Jaren Jackson Jr. The Grizzlies interior responded to the controversy surrounding his home stats with a complete game 28 points, 8 rebounds and 5 blocks. Indiana cut its teeth on him in the second half.
Bennedict Mathurin. The net scorer who scored two consecutive 12-point streaks in the same match! Aggressiveness to spare.
⛔TJ McConnell. 0 points, 5 empty bullets. The Pacers were not comfortable facing point guard Ja Morant and Tyus Jones. His worst game of the season.
Memphis (32-18): Hosts Portland on Wednesday.
Indiana (24-28): Hosts the Lakers on Tuesday.