Congratulations O.J. Mayo on a Great Rookie Season.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Grizzlies made NBA history last night

Trying to find positives in another grizzlies lost can be hard. But last night, the grizzlies made NBA history when Hamed Haddadi was inserted into the game. He became the first Iranian born player to play in the NBA. He played 4 minutes and contributed with an offensive rebound and earned 2 free throws which he made both of them. He also hustled back on defense to attempt to block a shot on the suns fast break but was called for a foul. I was glad to see that his first action wasn't during trash time.

Last nights loss was very frustrating to watch. I understand that the players may have been tired due to this being the 4'th game in 5 nights and traveling across country for 2 road games. Also, they had to play 3 overtime periods in those games. But to come home and play the suns who are without Steve Nash and then without Amare Stoudamire for over half of the game and to lose it again in the last 6 minutes is unacceptable. This team needs to learn how to close out games. And that goes for the coaching staff as well. I disagree with 2 coaching moves late in the game.

1. Kyle Lowry was taken out and Mike Conley put back into the game. Conley went 0-5 in the game with 2 points and no assists in nearly 20 minutes of playing time. Why would you replace the starting point guard at the end of the game with a player who isn't getting it done. Lowry had 6 points, 6 assists and 2 steals last night. I realize that isn't great numbers but it sure beats Conley's numbers. When the team only scored 11 points in the 4'th quarter, you can look at a PG who wasn't successful in running the offense.

2. Again, we only scored 11 points in the 4'th quarter. So why with 3+ minutes to go in the game do you take out your leading scorer. Hakim Warrick had 25 points on 7-11 shooting. That is very effective shooting, because he averaged 2.27 points per shot attempt because he kept getting to the free throw line. We couldn't score in the 4'th quarter so the leading scorer sits coming down the stretch?

We have several pieces of the puzzle, but we must learn how to put them together. Read more!

Sunday, December 28, 2008


Wow, I never thought I would have said this a month ago. I am going to miss Darko as he recovers from his injury. We are going to miss him. As of the last couple of weeks, he has been stepping up his play and starting to play like a starting big man should play in the NBA. I know he is only 23 years old and is still young, but being in the league now for 5 years, he needs to start playing up to his potential and doing it consistently. As of late he was doing that and we wish him a speedy recovery.

With Darko out, Marc needs to step up his play and become a force again for us. Hak and Arthur will also need to step in and help out on the boards and defensively as well. I imagine at some point we will also see Hamed. Hopefully he isn't as big a project as I am afraid he will be. I imagine there is a reason why we haven't seen him at all this season.

Good Luck Grizzlies in Minn. Read more!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Grizzlies WIN

I didn't attend last nights game due to traveling back from Kentucky for the Christmas holiday with family. I was dissapointed to find out that it wasn't being televised. So therefore I didn't get to see that game at all. I was glad to see though that the Grizzlies continued fighting and was able to pull out the win.

There are 2 trends that seemed to continue though in last nights game that must be of concern for the team.
1. Getting down by double figures early in the contest.
2. Allowing the opponent to shoot a very high percentage.
The team must step up their defensive effort.

With that being said, they did win. Go get the Spurs. Read more!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Gasol versus Gasol

Wow, what an evening of fun and excitement in FedEx Forum on Monday night. Last night was the largest crowd I remember seeing all season. There was a definite buzz in the air with several different points of interest last night. First, you had the excitement of Kobe and the Lakers in town. Second, you had the return of Pau Gasol back in the bluff city for the first time since his trade to the Lakers last season. Third, and of most interest to myself, was the matchup of Pau versus his brother Marc. It was noticed that there was a much larger contingent of press on press row of which many were of Spanish media.

The Grizzlies organization should be commended for putting on a good show last night. During a timeout in the 1’st quarter, they had prepared a nice tribute video in appreciation of Gasol’s contribution to the team. I noticed that Pau and his teammates and some Lakers staff watched the video when played. They also had the famous Radio City Rockettes for a half time show that was very enjoyable.

I was glad to see that the lackluster performance from Friday night’s game against the Bobcats had been put into the past and the young and hungry Grizzlies were back in uniform tonight. The Grizzlies came out in the first quarter and showed that there are not intimidated by the Lakers. They were able to match them blow for blow and finished the quarter with a 25-25 tie. It was good to see that they were not getting off to the slow start that has been happening of late.

The second quarter continued with the grizzlies going on a couple of runs to build some decent leads. One thing I noticed though, the Lakers always withstood the runs to never allow us to build a double digit lead. They always kept us within reach. We would build a lead up to 6 or 8 points and they would answer and bring it back to 2 or 3 points. We were able to finish the quarter strong and build an 8 point lead at half.

Now the question was, will we have another good third quarter or will we revert to the way we played at the beginning of the year and lose the third quarter. The Grizzlies came out strong in the third and played well and tried to keep pace with the Lakers. We ended up losing the quarter by 5 but was able to enter the fourth with a 3 point lead. At this point, the place was rocking with excitement. Grizzlies fans were holding the breath that Kobe wouldn’t go off and kill us again. All the Lakers fans, and yes there was a large number of them there, were trying to cheer their team on to victory.

The fourth quarter started off great as we were maintaining the lead and actually built it up to a 6 point lead with 4 minutes to go. That is when Kobe and the Lakers decided they would play their A game. There were several exciting plays made by both teams. O.J. drilled a clutch three pointer only to have Kobe answer with a three of his own with 1 on the shot clock. With the game tied at 96, the Lakers ended the game on a 9 point run. We turned the ball over several times and showed that we are still a young team that is trying to learn how to close out a game against the top teams in the league.

The motto for this year has been Young and Hungry. Yes, tonight, we came out Hungry all game, but in the end showed we are still YOUNG. In tonight’s game, you can see hope for the future.
Read more!

Grizzlies Bitten by Bobcats

With the Grizzlies coming in having won 4 of their last 5 games, expectations were high for the Grizzlies against the lowly Bobcats. The night was starting of great with the General Manager Chris Wallace at the main entrance greeting fans and answering questions. I spoke with him regarding the future possibilities of O.J. Mayo and all-star weekend. He mentioned that this year O.J. will definitely be in the Rookie – Sophomore game. He did say though it will be a tough fight but he expects O.J. to make the all-star team in the future. There is a good group of back-court players that are all-star caliber that O.J. will have to fight his way into.
As the first quarter was being played out, I remember thinking, we are down by less than 10 with them shooting 70%. When they come back to reality we will be right in this game. But the first quarter ended with us being down 36-26. We thought, it can’t get worse than this.
The second quarter continued down the same track with them continuing to shoot around 70% and us losing the quarter again and being down 58-44. Surely the worse part is behind us. We are switching goals at half time, so maybe their shooting touch will change. Hopefully they will cool off during the halftime break.
The third quarter ended up being worse that either the first or second quarter. We could only muster 16 points while giving up 28 to be down 86-60 going into the 4th quarter. It was so bad that fans had already started leaving and during the quarter break, they didn’t play any of the normal video clips of trying to pump up the crowd. There was no Stand Up Memphis, make some noise. Surely it couldn’t get worse.
The only good thing about the 4th quarter was the fact that it ended the game. The boo birds were out in the quarter because hardly no grizzlies were displaying effort or hustle tonight. I know O.J. was trying, but the fans were disappointed that coach didn’t play him more so that his streak of scoring in double figures would continue. It was a nice streak to start his career. Maybe that now the streak is over, he can play a little more relaxed. Mercifully the clock ran down to zero with us losing 112-83. Surely the worst was over.
Then I walk out to my car which was parked on Beale Street behind the Forum just down from the Baptist Church. I get to my car and find that some thieves had broken into it and stolen my GPS device. What a horrible night. Fans beware, the policeman who came and did my police report told me that they have been having trouble with cars getting broken into over there. If you park there be prepared for the worst. Read more!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Hornets sting the Grizzlies

Wow, even though the Grizzlies lost, what an entertaining game it was. The Grizzlies started off horribly in the 1'st quarter and led me to think it was going to be a long night. Once we got through the 1'st quarter, the Grizzlies of the last week showed up and put up a fight and got back into by half time. Then in the 3'rd quarter they played some excellent defense and brought the game to within a point for the final quarter. The final quarter was very exciting as we traded the lead with them. We just got out played down the stretch and lost an exciting game.

O J Mayo is a budding star for the Memphis Grizzlies and will be known around the league in a short while if he continues to play the way he has all season. That said, the refs we had tonight obviously hadn't been introduced to him and treated him like a rookie. Mayo just couldn't get any calls to go his way tonight. Give Mayo another year or two of playing the way he is and he will get some of the calls that other stars get such as Chris Paul was getting tonight.

Rudy and O J were great again tonight with both players scoring 28 and 20 respectively. It is so nice to have 2 players that you can expect to score 20 or more points every night. What was missing tonight was the supporting cast. We must have at least 1 but really 2 or 3 more players to score in double figures every night along with the 40+ points from Gay and Mayo. Darko has been playing well over the last week or so but tonight was only 2-7 with 6 points and Marc was 1-3 with 2 points. We need more than 8 points from out 2 seven footers. They did have 17 rebounds and 4 blocked shots which is a positive.

As a fan of the Grizzlies, I can see hope for the future in tonight's loss. The Hornets are leading our division and our young team took them down to the final 3 minutes of the game before it was decided. It would have been easy for them to have gotten discouraged after scoring 11 points in the first quarter and given up, but they fought back and had a chance to win the game tonight.

I expect a great effort on Friday night against Charlotte will result in win number 10 on the season.
Read more!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Toy Drive

My father and I went to the Grizzlies toy drive tonight. There was a nice crowd of fans there having an enjoyable time. It was a fun opportunity to see the players up close and getting a chance to talk to them. I noticed that Antoine Walker wasn't there tonight and wonder if that is because his contract is being bought out and hasn't been announced yet. I spoke to nearly every player and they were very friendly except for the new player Darius Miles. My father won a door prize which turned out to be a pair of club level tickets for the upcoming game against the Lakers. We are looking forward very much to the Gasol brothers matching up against each other. Read more!

NBA Grizzlies Team Card