The Oklahoma City Whine had what one could name a “current” loss to the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday night time.
It wasn’t a blowout. It wasn’t a game the Whine mounted an enormous comeback. They didn’t blow a noteworthy lead. These are how the bulk of their losses accept as true with long gone this season. On Wednesday night time … well, it modified into enticing a straightforward 122-113 defeat.
The 24 hours main up to the game modified into something else nevertheless straight forward.
The Whine’s flight modified into delayed due to the bleak climate in Oklahoma City. They traveled on Wednesday and went straight to the arena, which they arrived at spherical 6: 15 p.m. for the 8 p.m. tipoff.
“That’s the first time I’ve traveled the day of the game in the NBA,” center Mike Muscala said.
Muscala said legs had been tired in the muse of the game sooner than he got a burst. Guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who modified into coming off four straight overlooked games, said his legs had been tired in the muse as well.
But with that, the Whine didn’t want to bid the unusual day as an excuse for the loss.
“Shai told us sooner than the game no excuses,” Muscala said.
Gilgeous-Alexander relayed the message in the postgame press conference:
“The circumstances had been a small bit varied tonight, nonetheless it’s our job. It’s what we accept as true with to attain,” he said. “We gotta play to a fair correct current and a fair correct level.”
This modified into enticing one of the functionality excuses they didn’t want to hear after falling to Memphis.
The Grizzlies took fair correct thing about the absence of Al Horford, who modified into resting on the second night time of a again-to-again. Jonas Valanciunas had 22 facets and 12 rebounds, 5 of which got here on the offensive glass. Ja Morant had a triple-double with 15 facets, 11 rebounds and 12 assists.
Memphis had 52 facets in the paint, bigger than twice as many because the Whine’s 24.
Head coach Tag Daigneault wouldn’t bid Horford’s leisure to give his bigs an out for the defensive performance.
“Al’s a extraordinarily fair player. In actual fact legit player, huge defensive player,” Daigneault started. “No longer attempting to opt something else reach from him, nevertheless we’ve been without Al in again-to-backs sooner than and defended significantly better than we did tonight.”
As pricey because the facets in the paint modified into the fouling. Oklahoma City averages 18.1 fouls per game, the fourth-fewest in the league, and on common the opponent makes an strive 18.9 free throws, the third-fewest. On Tuesday, the Whine dedicated 25 fouls, allowing the Blazers to strive 33 free throws. Portland made 26 from the stripe.
All 5 Grizzlies starters scored as a minimum 15 facets, four attempted as a minimum six free throws, and three — Valanciunas, Grayson Allen and Kyle Anderson — accomplished with as a minimum 20 facets.
After ending the third quarter down by handiest one level, the Whine gave up 36 facets in the fourth. The Blazers attempted 18 free throws in that physique.
Oklahoma City had its handiest game from deep of the season, going 19-for-41, a 46.3% clip, nevertheless Portland’s percentage modified into truly equivalent as they hit 12 of 26, 46.2%.
“If we shoot the ball well, it’s huge, nevertheless if we can’t salvage stops … it doesn’t imply a lot,” Muscala said.
The Whine struggled to salvage stops nevertheless they moreover didn’t protect the ball namely well on offense, committing 18 turnovers. Anderson had 5 steals on his occupy.
The ultimate section of the game for the Whine modified into Gilgeous-Alexander’s return. He modified into solid, scoring 22 facets, and whereas he wasn’t as electrical as current, the guard got to the rim, had six assists to enticing one turnover, and after the game said his left knee modified into feeling 100% after he had overlooked a week of games.
“We didn’t make enough photographs, and nights love that occur,” Gilgeous-Alexander said. “It’s what it is, nevertheless I accept as true with we gave the trouble and I’m elated with that.”