I would like to put in an order for six more games of this, please.
Game 1 of the Grizzlies/Warriors Western Semifinals had all of the things we love about playoff basketball- intense, physical play, a hotly contested back and forth ballgame that literally came down to the last possession and stars making big time plays.
a 13-point lead at 42-29 was quickly sliced to 3, as the lead was quickly sliced to three as Golden State’s off-ball movement and pinpoint passes from Draymond Green and others picked the Memphis defense apart. However the Warriors would be without the services of Green from the second quarter on, following his ejection for a flagrant 2 foul on Brandon Clarke as Clarke was going up for a dunk. The Warriors soldiered on without their defensive QB and offensive conductor, but the Grizzlies wrested the momentum back, in their favour, ultimately taking a 61-55 lead into halftime.
Jaren Jackson jr had his best ever post-season game, to this point in his young career, going for 33 points and 10 rebounds. Ja Morant was was spectacluar as well, hitting several key shots and turning in a near triple-double with 34 points, 10 assists and 9 rebounds,. Despite the ejection of Draymond Green in the first half, Klay Thompson and Stephen Curry shooting a combined 14-39 from the floor, the heroics of Morant and Jackson were not enough to lift Memphis to a win they were in position to claim. However the Grizzlies not be able to finish their meal in the fourth quarter and that came back to bite them in the rear.
Jordan Poole torched Memphis for 31 points off the Golden State bench , everyone of which was needed to to help keep the Warriors afloat. Those 31 points , along with the Grizzlies inability to secure some key defensive rebounds later in the quarter, proved costly as it their inability to protect their defensive backboards can lead to additional possessions. Golden State had 26 second chance points, the last three were the go-ahead three from Klay Thompson with under a minute to go.
As the series moves to Game 2 the Warriors did not play their best game but still found a a way to win , as good and championship teams often do. The Grizzlies let a win slip through their fingers and if this pattern repeats itself their postseason will end far quicker than they anticipate.