Another big performance from the Grizzlies who knew how to manage the Wizards with great mastery by betting on a dazzling start and consistency until the end. On arrival, there was practically no match between the two teams as Memphis dominated its subject, going so far as to lead by 27 points.
The locals capitalized on their successful start with an aggressive Ja Morant, an already skilful Desmond Bane and an imperial Jackson Jr-Adams tandem under the panels. So much so that after a 3-pointer and a left-handed lay-up from Ja Morant, Memphis was already leading by 18 points after 9 minutes of play (28-10).
The Grizzlies kept their foot on the accelerator in the second quarter, increasing the gap to +21 following Desmond Bane’s three straight baskets (44-23). From there, the locals were able to manage their lead diligently. De’Anthony Melton lined up three consecutive 3-point missiles to make it 57-30 with three minutes to go. Despite a better third quarter, Washington never managed to worry Memphis.
The efforts of the Beal-Kuzma-Harrell trio allowed the Wizards to return to -12 at the end of the third quarter (82-70). Memphis then started again, with in particular a 3-pointer from Ja Morant and two from Killian Tillie to open the last act on a better note (95-77) and bury Washington’s last hopes.
WHAT YOU MUST REMEMBER
– Memphis dominates its subject. Passing a big gap quickly and holding on until the end is an art the Grizzlies have mastered perfectly this season. The Wizards paid the price last night and went too far when the balance tipped a little more in their favor. On arrival, after leading by 27 points, the locals resisted well in the final, and Killian Tillie’s two 3-point missiles put an end to the suspense at the start of the fourth quarter.
– The Wizards are sinking. First in the Eastern Conference after a month of competition, the Wizards are now out of the “play-in” this Sunday morning after suffering a fifth consecutive defeat. Bradley Beal’s teammates will have to react quickly in order to stay in the right car, 10th place in the East being occupied by a team from Atlanta for its part in full swing.
✅ Ja Morant. The phenomenon has struck again. Hot from the start of the match and reinforced by his 3-point address, the Grizzlies point guard delivered a new recital, marked by his share of acrobatic penetrations and a flight worthy of Vince Carter in the third quarter. On arrival, he signed 34 points in 34 minutes, 15/27 on shots.
✅ Steven Adams. To change a little Desmond Bane, who still has the faithful lieutenant of Ja Morant with his 19 points, and also to recall the shadow work still carried out by the New Zealand pivot this night. His presence is almost essential to the good performance of the Grizzlies and he demonstrated it again in this match by his activity on both sides of the floor to finish with a good line of stats: 10 points, 15 rebounds including 10 offensive (!), 4 assists and 3 blocks in 29 minutes
⛔ Bradley Beal. A complicated match despite his 12 assists since he almost missed all his shots, finishing at 2/11 with a dunk among his two successful attempts. Far too little to meet the leadership status that is his at the Wizards.
First refused for a passage in force then validated by the referees after the request for revision of the Grizzlies, the alley-oop of Jaren Jackson Jr for Ja Morant will go around the web. Desmond Bane first got the crowd going by going up against Spencer Dinwiddie. Then, on the transition, Ja Morant offered himself a “windmill” on an alley-oop which blew up the FedExForum.
Memphis (35-17) : the Grizzlies hit the road again, heading to Philadelphia to face the Sixers on Monday
Washington (23-26) : the Wizards will continue in Milwaukee this Tuesday