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At the end, Ja Morant’s Grizzlies stop the Knicks series

Big opposition tonight between the Knicks who remained on three straight wins and the Grizzlies, determined to keep their 2nd place in the West. After a breathtaking match from start to finish, it was Taylor Jenkins’ men who snatched the decision, at the cost of a big effort in the last act.

Ja Morant was quick to step into the spotlight with a huge tap dunk. A good start from Julius Randle, 3/3 shooting, forced Memphis to step up a gear, relying on the inevitable Morant, to score from 3-pointers or serve Steven Adams while Jaren Jackson Jr inflicted a big against Randle (14-11).

Kyle Anderson also went there against Randle, but it took more to calm the ardor of these Knicks since even the 11-2 passed at the end of the quarter was not enough to distance the New Yorkers, who returned at -4 on a 3-pointer from Evan Fournier at the last second of the period (34-30).

Hot shots from Tyus Jones and Jaren Jackson Jr matched with the ever-valuable activity of Brandon Clarke helped keep Memphis ahead. But NYC was still in the game, thanks in particular to the Burks-Quickley-Barrett triplet.

The Grizzlies’ second run, marked by Desmond Bane’s 3-pointer and Anderson’s block on Robinson, moved the hosts to +11 on a left-handed lay-up from Adams. The Barrett-Randle pair then again worked to reduce the gap before the break (55-51), even if the last highlights were in favor of the locals between the alley-oop concluded by Brandon Clarke and the lay -up in transition from Ziaire Williams (61-56).

The Knicks finally raised their voices after returning from the locker room, revived by Burks who laid the foundations for a 14-1 fueled by Randle and concluded with a dunk from Robinson (66-74). New York was then able to count on Fournier, 3-point and assist for Taj Gibson, to respond to the remarkable passage of Williams (78-83). But Fournier’s 3-point, RJ Barrett’s counterattack lay-up and Randle’s 2+1 then put the Knicks back in the best of shape after the third quarter (87-96).

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Except that the “refuse to lose attitude” of Morant and his family paid off again, since the Grizzlies completely reversed the trend with a 13-2 concluded by a left-handed lay-up from Morant (102-101). Stunned, the Knicks ended up cracking against the fury of Ja Morant and precious defensive stops, notably through JJJ (115-108). Despite two missed shots from Desmond Bane at the end, Memphis thus snatched one more victory, 118 to 114.

WHAT YOU MUST REMEMBER

– The last act of the Grizzlies. Badly embarked 12 minutes from the end, Ja Morant’s teammates provided an effort of great intensity on both sides of the floors to change the course of the match. The Knicks are going to have nightmares, between Jaren Jackson Jr’s counterattacks and the 200% ball comebacks at the time of a Ja Morant on a mission.

– The content, not the result. As the coaches do after each match, Tom Thibodeau may regret the outcome of the meeting and this defeat, especially in the management of the lead wasted by his players in the last quarter. In content and attitudes, however, the New York coach will not have much to reproach his troops as they have displayed a combative face, facing one of the roughest franchises in the league. We almost found the Knicks of last season, in the content. All that was missing was the result.

– The “Block Panther” strikes again. Jaren Jackson Jr still scored points in the race for best defender of the year with 5 of his team’s 16 blocks which often gave the whole group a boost of energy. Beyond that and his decent contribution in attack, JJJ ensured, with the help of Brandon Clarke, when Steven Adams left his teammates in the third quarter. On the one hand, the Grizzlies also won this game in defense, notably conceding only 18 points in the last quarter, and Jaren Jackson Jr had a lot to do with it.

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TOPS/FLOPS

Ja Morant. Quite a bit of waste on the shot on arrival (14/33!) but a leading match on his part, playing each possession at 200%, never intimidated when infiltrating the racket. His two left hand lay-ups in the last quarter after a show of force testified to his unfailing determination. The leader thus finished the meeting with 37 points and 8 assists to his credit, but above all the victory at the end.

Julius Randle. If we have sometimes seen the ghost of Julius Randle on the ground this season, the interior of the Knicks had indeed put on his leader’s costume last night, and carried his team as best he could. A full game on his part with 36 points, 12 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 blocks and 2 steals, but a loss at the end.

Desmond Bane. The Grizzlies shooter left his mark on the season with his consistency, but he had a great hole in this game, like his two missed shots at the very end of the game, to finish at 12 points at 4/ 15 shooting. A small exit from the track without consequence for the rear.

THE FOLLOWING

Memphis (46-22): the Grizzlies begin a four-game road trip East. First stop in Oklahoma City this Sunday.

New York (28-39): the Knicks continue with the New York derby this Sunday on the Brooklyn floor.

Grizzlies / 118 Shots Bounces
Players Minimum Shots 3 points LF O D T pd party Int bp CT +/- Points Rating
J.Jackson Jr. 27 4/9 2/4 3/3 1 3 4 1 5 1 5 +4 13 17
S. Adams 25 2/7 0/0 2/4 6 3 9 4 1 1 1 -8 6 9
J Morant 38 14/33 1/4 8/10 1 3 4 8 2 2 2 1 -3 37 29
D. Bane 28 4/15 2/6 2/4 2 3 5 1 5 2 +1 12 7
Z.Williams 24 5/9 3/7 0/0 3 3 1 1 -23 13 12
B.Clarke 25 5/8 0/0 0/0 4 4 8 3 2 4 +10 10 21
K.Anderson 19 3/4 0/0 0/3 2 7 9 3 2 1 2 2 +2 6 15
T.Jones 20 4/6 1/1 2/4 1 3 4 4 2 +22 11 15
J.Konchar 16 2/3 0/0 0/0 1 4 5 2 2 +18 4 10
D.Melton 18 3/9 0/4 0/1 2 2 3 2 3 3 -3 6 4
Total 46/103 9/26 17/29 18 35 53 23 27 8 10 16 118
Knicks / 114 Shots Bounces
Players Minimum Shots 3 points LF O D T pd party Int bp CT +/- Points Rating
J.Randle 40 11/27 3/6 11/13 3 9 12 6 5 2 4 2 +5 36 36
Mr Robinson 34 5/8 0/0 0/2 8 8 16 4 5 3 3 4 -4 10 29
A. Burks 35 6/11 2/5 4/5 1 5 6 5 5 1 -11 18 24
E. Fournier 29 3/8 3/7 3/3 4 4 4 2 2 +16 12 13
R. Barrett 40 9/25 1/6 4/7 1 6 7 2 1 1 2 +6 23 12
J.Sims 6 0/0 0/0 0/0 1 2 3 1 2 -6 1
T.Gibson 15 1/2 0/0 2/2 2 2 6 -5 4 5
Mr McBride 11 0/1 0/0 0/0 2 -7 -1
I. Quickley 31 3/8 1/1 4/5 1 3 4 2 4 1 3 -14 11 9
Total 38/90 10/25 28/37 15 39 54 23 31 8 16 6 114

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