Golden State Warriors Put Up Historic Numbers against Grizzlies


Well, this was supposed to be a close game. The Memphis Grizzlies were rolling into Oracle Arena with their patented “Grit and Grind” play style, and some confidence following 0 point win against the Brooklyn Nets.

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After the first quarter, the Grizzlies were up one, and it looked as if they might have been able to grind (get it?) one out against the Dubs, and hand the Golden State Warriors their first loss.

And then the Warriors happened. There’s really no other way to explain it.

After losing the first quarter, Stephen Curry and Co. proceed to outscore the Grizz 72-27 (!!!!) in the second and third quarters combined. That was not a typo. Festus Ezeli played like the true heir-apparent to Andrew Bogut, and he may actually take over for the Aussie in the near future, but that’s for another column. Ezeli scored just 11 points, but his real production came from his 10 boards and 3 blocks. Ezeli’s plus/minus, a stat used to measure how effective a player is by comparing the team’s play while he is on the court vs. play while he is off the court, was a +37 – an absurd number. To put that in comparison, Stephen Curry scored 53 against the Pelicans the other day, and his plus/minus was a +16.

The lack of Andrew Bogut was a major concern for many fans heading into this matchup, as his ability to roam the paint freely while “guarding” Tony Allen during the postseason last year was helpful to the team beyond numbers.

Would the Warriors be able to adequately guard Zac Randolph and Marc Gasol in the paint without one of their best defenders?

Answer: Yes, with ease.

The Grizzlies were held to 49 points after the first three quarters, and only 69 points overall. That’s right – 69 points against a playoff team with one of the best front courts in the NBA. This game was simply another example of how the Warriors’ depth being one of the most valuable parts of the team. Only a team with the depth the quality of the Warriors could lose their starting center, and then have their backup post a +37.

And hey, remember Steve Kerr? The coach who took a sixth seed who lost in the first round to reigning world champions? Yeah, I guess we don’t really need him.

Luke Walton, who was promoted to lead assistant only this summer, has proven to be more than a fill-in for Kerr. Walton has been able to motivate the defending champs, something that many long tentured head coaches aren’t able to do. Of course, we could also thank Glenn Rivers for all of his “luck” comments. I think Walton’s coaching and his team’s play has proved that it’s probably wise for the league to stop talking trash to the Dubs. I mean, the Grizzlies didn’t even say anything, and we just beat them by 50. So what’s in store for the Clippers, a team we already hated before we got “lucky” on our dominating run to the championship?

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Overall, this was simply an exercise in domination by the Warriors. I can honestly say that I have never seen a team beat up on another team more than what the Warriors did to the Grizzlies. Steph had yet another 20-point quarter, this time scoring 21 in the third. We already discussed how dominant Ezeli was, and his front court partner Draymond Green almost nabbed a triple-double, putting up 11 points, 9 rebounds, and 8 assists. Klay Thompson was his usual self, grabbing 7 boards to go along with 14 points, and Klay got a plus/minus of +41. That’s right! The Warriors played so well that a +37 wasn’t even the team best.

What was your favorite part of this game? Pulling away in the second, Steph dancing with a fan during a commercial break, or was it the play of the bench, who not only held on to the lead they were handed, but also added to it (shoutout to Ian Clark, who had 15 points)? Tweet me @od1ll with your favorite moment, or leave a comment in the box down below.