The Memphis Grizzlies ended the Oklahoma City Thunder’s 5-game winning streak last night, beating the Thunder on their home floor 107-97.
The Grizzlies played a complete game while there were holes in OKC’s. The Thunder led 30-20 after one then were let down by their second unit as Memphis outscored OKC 36-15 in the second quarter.
The hole was too big for the Thunder to climb out of despite rolling with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook for the entire second half.
The Thunder shot 48.6 percent from the field but Memphis shot 47.3 percent, grabbed 12 offensive rebounds and turned the ball over just eight times.
Here are the Game Grades:
Kevin Durant – 44 minutes, 34 points, 10 rebounds, 5 assists – A
Durant scored a season-high 34 last night and was again very active rebounding on the defensive end. Durant has tried to become more than just a scorer last season but last night was proof that there will be times when he is needed to return to that elite scoring role. Memphis was smothering Durant all night giving him little space on the catch. Durant still put up great numbers and was not the reason for the loss at all. Durant was getting torched by Rudy Gay at the other end in the second half as Gay was making tough shot after tough shot over Durant.
Russell Westbrook – 43 minutes, 17 points, 13 assists, 6 rebounds – B
Westbrook was not shooting it well again last night but made up for it somewhat by racking up the assists. For whatever reason, Memphis is not a good matchup for Westbrook who went just 6-of-19 from the field. With the second unit providing very little offense, it was a game where OKC needed more from Westbrook in terms of scoring. He wasn’t up for it last night.
Serge Ibaka – 39 minutes, 17 points, 8 rebounds, 4 blocks – B+
Ibaka continues his double-figure scoring roll this year with another nice game going 7-of-10 from the field. Ibaka held his own defensively too anchoring the paint nicely while he was out there.
Kevin Martin – 33 minutes, 7 points, 3 rebounds – D
Martin didn’t reach double-digits for the first time this year and it came in a game where the Thunder desperately needed from offense from him. Memphis played tight D and there weren’t a lot of opportunities for Martin who went just 1-for-4 from the field in the game. Yes, this was a game where the Thunder could have really used James Harden instead of Martin.
Kendrick Perkins – 30 minutes, 8 points, 2 rebounds, 3 assists – B-
Perkins gave the Thunder a little offense last night which was needed. He got into a scuffle with Zach Randolph in the fourth quarter and was ejected. Just two rebounds from Perk in a game like this simply isn’t enough.
Thabo Sefolosha – 21 minutes, 8 points, 3 rebounds – B
Sefolosha hit two threes in the first quarter to help OKC out to their early lead then wasn’t heard from much after that. The Thunder didn’t go small as much because Memphis was so big so we didn’t see as much Sefolosha last night.
Nick Collison – 15 minutes, 4 points, 5 rebounds – D
Collison fouled out in just 15 minutes and it really hurt the Thunder. They needed more from him last night and instead were forced to play Perkins many more minutes which is never a good thing. Collison looked kind of out of it and was frustrated getting called for so many fouls.
Eric Maynor – 10 minutes, 2 points, 1 assist – D
The entire Thunder second unit didn’t perform well and Maynor was certainly a part of that disappointment. He was struggling with Jerryd Bayless’ tight defense on him and never really created much for himself or anyone else.
Hasheem Thabeet – 6 minutes, 0 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist – C
Thabeet hardly played but actually made somewhat of a positive impact grabbing a few rebounds while he was out there. He’s still not ready to play important minutes for the Thunder in a game like this though.