In game one on Saturday night, pretty much everything that could’ve gone right for the Los Angeles Clippers, did.
In rather stunning fashion, they thumped the No. 5 seeded Memphis Grizzlies 112-91 to take a 1-0 lead in their best-of-seven first round series.
The big key for the Clippers was their incredible edge in the rebounding department, where they held a 47-23 edge. That’s the kind of margin you might expect an NBA team to have against a college team, or something.
Memphis ranked third in the entire league during the regular season in both offensive rebounding and in limiting opponent offensive boards. L.A. grabbed 14 offensive rebounds in game one, with the Grizz finishing with just four of their own. The Clippers finished with a massive 25-5 edge in second chance points.
Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph combined for six total rebounds, while Caron Butler, the Clippers’ small forward, grabbed seven of his own.
Los Angeles also got an expectedly stellar effort from Chris Paul, who finished with 23 points and seven assists, including 3-4 from three-point range.
Another stunning aspect of game one was that Blake Griffin, who averaged 18 points and eight rebounds during the regular season, was virtually a non-factor, finishing with 10 points and five rebounds.
Seven Clippers scored in double-figures, compared to four for Memphis. Jerryd Bayless led the Grizzlies off-the-bench with 19 points.
Memphis prides itself on its defense and rebounding, but they’ll obviously have to try and regain their focus and make necessary adjustments in order to avoid slipping into an 0-2 hole after tonight. One of the league’s best defensive teams can’t be allowing their opponent to shoot nearly 56 percent for an entire game and expect to have a chance to win.
Tip-off for game two is set for 7:30pm PT and will be televised nationally on TNT, and locally in the Los Angeles market on Fox Sports Prime Ticket.
About the Author
Written by Taylor Smith
Taylor Smith is a writer for the Los Angeles Clippers.