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Grizzlies pull away in Game 4 to even series with Clippers at two games apiece

Apr 27, 2013, 8:02 PM EDT

Los Angeles Clippers v Memphis Grizzlies - Game Three Getty Images

The Grizzlies imposed their will on the the Clippers for the second straight game of the series, and as a result, we’re all tied at two games apiece. Memphis got monster performances from both Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol that allowed the team to pull away for a convincing 104-83 Game 4 win over the Clippers.

Game 5 is Tuesday night at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

We’d love to break down for you exactly how the first two quarters unfolded, but since we weren’t physically in the building for this one, that would be impossible. Thanks to the Bulls needing three overtimes to take care of the Nets, along with the fact that there was no contingency plan in place from TNT (which had the broadcast rights for each of these games), nobody but those inside the FedEx Forum in Memphis actually witnessed the first half.

It appeared as though Chris Paul came out with a mindset to be more aggressive from the start, after finishing with just eight points and four assists against five turnovers in L.A.’s Game 3 loss. Paul had 14 points and five assists at the intermission, with zero turnovers.

The Grizzlies had some positives in the first half as well, once again getting Zach Randolph going early to the tune of 16 first half points to go along with seven rebounds. Memphis got out to a lead of as many as 12 in the first quarter, but the Clippers had managed to come back to take a one-point lead at the break.

The game remained close throughout the third quarter, but Marc Gasol really got rolling for Memphis, scoring 14 of his 24 points in the period.

Memphis blew it open in the fourth, thanks to a 19-5 run to start the period that lasted the first six and a half minutes. L.A. couldn’t do anything offensively in the final frame, and while they created open looks from three-point distance, they knocked down just 1-8 from beyond the arc in the game’s final 12 minutes.

Paul once again struggled to produce late in the game, and managed just one point, one assists, and one turnover in just over seven minutes of fourth quarter action.

The Clippers missed some open looks, but the lack of attention to detail on the defensive end is really what killed them down the stretch. Randolph and Gasol carried the offensive load over the first three quarters, but it was Mike Conley, Quincy Pondexter, and Tony Allen who did the damage in the fourth, as L.A. allowed Memphis to shoot 10-of-16 in the final period for 62.5 percent.

The Grizzlies controlled the rebounding battle for the second straight game, grabbing eight more than the Clippers on the offensive end and 17 more in total. Memphis seemed to simply want it more on their home floor, and honestly showed more fight down the stretch than did Los Angeles.

It’ll be interesting to see if the Clippers can get back to what made them successful in the first two games of this series once things shift back home for Game 5. It wouldn’t seem to be as simple as home court advantage, but the way that L.A. fell apart in the fourth quarter while Memphis seemed to see its entire team surge, the Clippers returning to their home floor might allow them to do the same.

  1. daniel10017 - Apr 27, 2013 at 8:35 PM

    Vinny Del Negro will be fired if the Clippers lose the first round. They will throw $$$$$ at Phil Jackson’s way

  2. realfootballfan - Apr 27, 2013 at 8:41 PM

    Whoever wins this series could be the team that goes to the finals if they can get past the Spurs, which we already know the Grizzlies have no fear of from how they dismantled them a couple of years ago in the first round.

  3. lucifershuttlesworth - Apr 27, 2013 at 9:18 PM

    The West is wide open. This is going to be good.

    • biasedhomer - Apr 27, 2013 at 9:46 PM

      Not wide open,
      Rockets won’t beat the Thunder and the winner of the Nuggets/GS game isn’t going anywhere without Gallinari or Lee (respectively). And you can already stick a fork in the Lakers.

  4. ajonesmc931 - Apr 27, 2013 at 9:24 PM

    Go grizz great game now gotta keep the momentum. I love how everyone counted them out after 0-2

  5. badintent - Apr 27, 2013 at 11:10 PM

    Tony Allen is a Baller. Ball don’t lie !

  6. Mr. Wright 212 - Apr 27, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    Grizzlies are legit. And it is “wide open” for the teams that actually have a chance to win anything (for the remedial types who like to play devil’s advocate by trying to “correct” everyone all the time), because the Thunder are proving already to be vulnerable when Durant gets locked down, the Grizzlies can play any style of game, and you can’t really count out Golden State or Denver. The Clippers are SOFT. Loved watching Memphis take it to them.

  7. raylangivens2 - Apr 28, 2013 at 12:33 AM

    “nobody but those inside the FedEx Forum in Memphis actually witnessed the first half”

    This isn’t true. I live an hour from Memphis and I watched the game on channel 650 on directv with the local announcers.

    • badintent - Apr 28, 2013 at 1:00 AM

      I wanted to watch the game too, but the Canadian Mooseheads blocked it with hockey games. !! I put this all on Bettman. He sold out to some greedy owners to restart the season.

  8. waynegretsky77 - Apr 28, 2013 at 1:50 AM

    blake griffin cant do anything but dunk

  9. waynegretsky77 - Apr 28, 2013 at 1:51 AM

    Charles Barkley has a man-crush on Randolph… he has all year, despite the Clippers owning the Grizz.

    But why wouldn’t he? Fat power-forward who can’t run or jump must bring back memories.

  10. ajonesmc931 - Apr 28, 2013 at 3:28 AM

    Marc Gasol is the best center in the league right now. He is consistent and efficient on both ends of the floor

  11. halfbaht - Apr 28, 2013 at 7:41 AM

    Clippers are choking like we all knew they would.

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