The Memphis Grizz rode the strength of a 41-point first quarter as they beat the L.A. Clippers, 121-113. This win puts the new Memphis squad at 2-0 for the preseason.
Before everyone breaks out the champagne, it should be noted that the L.A. Clippers starters, including Chicago transplant Elton Brand, played an average of 8 minutes apiece.
In contrast, the starting five of the Grizzlies played most of the game, with only backup forward Pau Gasol giving significant minutes.
Still, Memphis did put up an impressive 23 point lead on the Clippers ÔB team. Shooting guard Michael Dickerson posted up 28 points while fellow guard Jason Williams chipped in with 23. Center Lorenzen Wright scored 19 points and pulled down 9 rebounds, while forward Stromile Swift overcame early foul trouble by scoring 12 points and collecting 7 rebounds.
In regards to the fast start, forward Shane Battier said It just goes to show you that what were capable of doing on offense. Unfortunately the game did not show what Battier is able to do on offense with the rookie guard scored only 6 points in 34 minutes of play.
Battier thinks that the amount of time the starters spend on the floor is all about teaching the team how to play. If you look at [last years] team, he says, a lot of them lost what it felt like to win. After five season, its tough to keep that edge.
Also, Battier says that the new-look Grizzlies, which only return one starter from last year, needs some time to get its starting five on the same page. Were just trying to gel, he says. Thats what you need from a brand-new team.
On other side of the court, the Clippers spread the action to all their backups, giving plenty of opportunity to each as 6 different scrubs scored in double digits. Guard Earl Boykins led the Clippers with 21 points while forward/guard Darius Miles scored 14.
The Grizzlies take on yet another pre-season opponent Monday evening as they host the Seattle Supersonics at the Pyramid at 7 p.m. Of interest will be to see how the starting five fair after their collective minutes Sunday evening.