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NBA Playoffs: Grizzlies survive Paul’s 29, even series at 1-1

May 3, 2012, 12:49 AM EDT

Los Angeles Clippers v Memphis Grizzlies - Game Two Getty Images

It wasn’t pretty, but the Memphis Grizzlies were able to bounce back from their heartbreaking Game 1 defeat and even up their 1st-round series with the Los Angeles Clippers before the series goes back to Los Angeles.

Chris Paul was the best player on the floor on Wednesday night, as he was able to record 29 points on 17 shots, six assists, and five steals, but his efforts were for naught against the Grizzlies, who got contributions from a huge number of players and handily won the possession battle.

During the regular season, the Clippers had the 2nd-best turnover rate in the league and 6th-best rebound rate in the league, but they lost on Wednesday night because they were unable to hold onto the ball or haul in rebounds. The Clippers allowed 23 points off turnovers on Wednesday, and only managed four offensive rebounds to Memphis’ 16. That led to Memphis getting eight more field goal attempts and 21 more free throw attempts than the Clippers, who lost despite shooting 57% from the field and 56% from beyond the arc.

Even though the Clippers managed to steal home-court advantage with an incredible comeback, they’ll be coming back to Los Angeles with a lot to worry about. The team isn’t getting balanced contributions, and would have been on the wrong end of two blowouts if the Grizzlies didn’t take their foot off the gas pedal in Game 1 or Chris Paul hadn’t been absolutely on fire in Game 2. Home-court is important, but right now the Grizzlies look bigger, deeper, tougher, and hungrier than the Clippers do, and those are things the Clippers will need to address if they want to make it out of the first round.

  1. cakemixa - May 3, 2012 at 1:04 AM

    Clippers are a joke and are ridiculously lucky this series isn’t 2-0 right now.

    • chrisppers - May 3, 2012 at 4:00 AM

      If anything its more like the joke was ON them! This was really one of the most fixed games ever displayed, the refs couldn’t have been anymore obvious. And don’t say the grizzlies won because of rebounds and turnovers, the only reason they were able to do that was because the refs let them get away with murder while calling fouls against the clippers when they would barely touch them at all. FTs were 18 to 38 for Memphis, I mean really? Seriously?! Find the last game a team lost shooting over 57% FG and 56% 3pt!
      It’s sad to see the NBA really rig games just to make a series interesting to raise ratings. I can personally guarantee that Memphis will get specifically 1 win out of the next two games in LA.

      • slowclyde86 - May 3, 2012 at 9:37 AM

        Whining like this makes you look foolish. Stop it. Memphis was the more aggressive team attacking the rim this game. That usually correlates to more free throws, etc. There is nothing written that ways free throws must be equal.

        Or maybe you’re right. Maybe the refs huddled together, awaiting a call from the commish as to who should win. “OK, the Grizz it is tonight.” That could be just how it happened.

        Oh how I truly hate this type of garbage.

      • grizzfan - May 3, 2012 at 10:04 AM

        Chris Paul is a great player but should be embarrassed by his attempt to flop on the run out by Quincy Pondexter with 5 minutes left in 2nd quarter. It was rediculous, anybody who doubts he is the biggest flopper in the league (i.e. Vinnie Del Negro) needs to watch that one in slow mo. He needs to stand up and be a man and just play basketball and quit all this other garbage.

      • chrisppers - May 3, 2012 at 2:26 PM

        If you were actually watching the game, you would have seen that the Clippers were actually attacking the rim, however, when you constantly get beat and batter with no calls, you’re probably not going to continue to do it…

        The garbage reflects the facts and the reality of the situation.

      • chrisppers - May 3, 2012 at 2:31 PM

        BTW, Mo Williams, Eric Bledsoe, and Nick Young all got injured in that game. Coincidence? I don’t think so, like I said they got away with murder.

        Yes they were more aggressive, but only because the refs allowed and enabled them to be. Whenever the Clippers tried to match it, the refs would 9 times out of 10 call or not call a foul in favor of Memphis.

      • slowclyde86 - May 3, 2012 at 2:34 PM

        Yeah, chrisppers. The refs are out to get you and your team. The conspiracy lives on. (Whatever makes you feel better).

        I am not a fan in any way of either team, but I always fine the whining absolutely hilarious. When the Cippers go down, take that misplaced bitterness with you all off-season. If only it weren’t for those darn refs!!! Wahhhhhhhhhhhhh!

      • grizzfan - May 3, 2012 at 4:23 PM

        10 of those free throws were in the last 47 seconds of the game due to the clippers fouling to extend the game.

      • chrisppers - May 3, 2012 at 4:41 PM

        I’m merely pointing out the fact that this happens in the NBA, and this game was just an example of it. This happens to almost every other team as well, it’s just annoying to see and it ruins the game. If you’re too blind to see that, enjoy the ignorant bliss. Slowclyde, you’ve blown things way out of proportion and your personal shots say more about you than they do about me.
        Did I ever say free throws must be equal? Did I say the refs huddled together(it only takes 1 to blow a whistle)? There can’t be misplace bitterness if there isn’t bitterness to begin with, just merely pointing out observations that anyone with a cent of knowledge could see.
        At this point if they go down, it would be more related to injuries though.
        And the FTs were 20+, and even if you take the <10 FTs away at the end of the game, the resulting large disparity still raises a flag.

  2. edweird0 - May 3, 2012 at 2:40 AM

    I feel like CP3 is about take over this series. He’s been playing phenomenal bball all series. He almost stole this one tonight by his damn self. The grizzlies are lucky they got such even contribution from all their players, hopefully they can sustain this or else CP3 is gunna make ‘em pay.

  3. mungman69 - May 3, 2012 at 3:05 AM

    The Clippers have lost too many players to be able to go far

  4. mclayton31 - May 3, 2012 at 3:18 AM

    The grizzlies always get even contributions from everybody. Balance is what they thrive on.

  5. 00maltliquor - May 3, 2012 at 3:19 AM

    Would be nice to know the final score, for those of us who come straight here after work and not NBA.com

    • edweird0 - May 3, 2012 at 3:24 AM

      You make a very valid point.

  6. marlin1894 - May 3, 2012 at 3:31 AM

    This is the most interesting series so far. Memphis has awesome fans, they react to everything. Too bad we have to wait until the finals to see Miami fans give a hoot. If they make it that is.

  7. mclayton31 - May 3, 2012 at 3:40 AM

    The key to this series is Nic Young. The Clippers need a third scoring option.

  8. rodge1 - May 3, 2012 at 7:59 AM

    Is it a coincidence that I never knew any Clippers’ fans until they got CP3?

    • passerby23 - May 3, 2012 at 2:19 PM

      I don’t understand why someone can’t become a fan when the team gets new players and coaches. So, unless you’re a tried and true diehard fan “from the beginning”, you can’t become a fan of the team?

      The reason you like certain teams is because you like the players. If you were a big CP3 fan when he was in New Orleans, that means you can’t cheer for him now?

      This whole “I’ve always been a committed fan” thing is ridiculous. It’s sad that people have to try to prove (which can’t really be done anyway) that they were always fans of the team. By the way, I’m cheering for the Grizz in this series. Oh wait, I guess I can’t cheer for them unless I’ve always liked them.

    • abchome - May 4, 2012 at 2:13 PM

      Get more friends…

    • rosesacl - May 5, 2012 at 12:24 AM

      blake griffin

  9. mclayton31 - May 3, 2012 at 9:09 AM

    Dude are you serious? So CP3 doesn’t win the academy award every game? He intentionally runs into guys and then flops to the ground like a child throwing a temper tantrum. Memphis has been winning all year by doing the same things; rebounding and creating turnovers. I guess the refs made chris paul turn the ball over 5 times too.

  10. allball23 - May 3, 2012 at 9:30 AM

    If the clippers can fast break and do a decent job rebounding then they have have cp3 who can close out the game they have a shot. If not mephis is to big for them to handle.

  11. patsfanvt - May 3, 2012 at 9:49 AM

    if the clippers lose this series, don’t blame CP3

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