Dillon Brooks of the Memphis Grizzlies returning from a one-game suspension has decided to exit his team in the Western Conference semifinal series with the Golden State Warriors. He’s about to make an impact Monday night in Game 4. Unfortunately for the Grizzlies, his record was very good chucking errant 3-pointers off the back of the net and dribbling the ball off his feet.
Brooks is (usually) one of the better players on one of the NBA’s most prolific youth teams, but there is no substitute for the previous experience. The Grizzlies got some, and it will pay for them in the future, but the future is not now. Their championship-tested contestant is making sure.
On Monday, the Grizzlies have the opportunity to present even the best of seven series of two games – in San Francisco, no less. But they were followed by 3 points when Brooks put the spotlight on Jaren Jackson Jr., a friend who had enough time – about 15 seconds still in the game – to be patient. Instead, Jackson started a 3-pointer with three defenders in his area. Golden State’s Draymond Green got a hand on the ball, and Jackson lost.
“We rushed a few games there,” Memphis Coach Taylor Jenkins said after his team lost 101-98. “We just need to learn from him and improve for the next game.”
Ahead of Game 5 on Wednesday, the Grizzlies are struggling with another new concept: the ability to eliminate. They walked in the series, 3-1, and the situation of Ja Morant, who without a Monday fall with a right knee injury, is uncertain. She is looking bleak for them.
Against a lesser opponent, perhaps the Grizzlies could have easily overcame their youth – combined now with Morant’s absence. The Warriors are no less a contender. They proved so much in Game 4, even after they lost their first 15 3-point try, and even after they were only 38 points in the first half, and even after they traded followed by about 12.
Stephen Curry said, “Report it off,” said Stephen Curry, who recalled his emotional exchange with Green after Green interrupted Jackson’s shot at the last minute. “Something for the benefit of, ‘That’s what you do.’ At all times we have to appreciate its performance at the end of the floor, especially at this stage, that is all about. “
More recently, there has been hope that the series will provide some 21st century baseball at its best. Here two teams are able to collect scores with fireworks.
Also, movies like it have the potential to be a source of controversy. The Grizzlies, after Morant, are the new kids on the block, competing ahead of time. Golden State, of course, has regained its prominence after two injury-marred seasons.
The needles, therefore, should be a decorative one, crammed with soaring dunks and deep 3-pointers and mutual respect. Instead, through four games, he got more Royal Rumble than Alvin Ailey. Green was eliminated for offense in Game 1. Golden State’s Gary Payton II broke his elbow in Game 2 after Brooks pulled him over his head as Payton went into a layup. And after limping out of court in Game 3, Morant took to the media to accuse Golden State’s Jordan Poole of pornography on his own.
About an hour before the start of Game 4, an alliance was received despite strangers when Golden State announced that Steve Kerr would not be available to the coach because he had entered the league Coronavirus health and safety. The replacement, Mike Brown, one of his assistants, will call for a shot. The oddest part of all? Earlier today, the Sacramento Kings named Brown as their new leader. (He will be with the Golden State for a later season.)
Kerr’s inability to add to that sense of attrition. Payton could be gone next time. Morant sat behind the Grizzlies in a sweatshirt. And now Kerr needs to watch the game from home, part of the TV audience that has been on the evenings of face-to-face performances.
Golden State has a well-deserved reputation for playing the sport of basketball. But this is a team that can still win ugly, without small inventory in the spring.
“We’ve been here before, and we know how to pull off a game like this,” Curry said.
Without Morant, Memphis wants it. After a few minutes in recent weeks, Steven Adams has started on the spot and strong, finishing with 10 points and 15 rebounds. The problem is someone else. Brooks shot 5 out of 19 on the field. Kyle Anderson goes 2 out of 7 from the free line. And Jackson remembers all seven of his 3-point experiments.
“It was difficult when that happened,” he said. “I want myself more than that.”
The question is whether Memphis has more to offer. What the Young Grizzlies seem to want is a post-season debate – a quick battle of secrets to win the game high. They win a lot during the regular season, ending with the second-best record in the NBA. When prevention makes immunization easy and immunization difficult, when free does not feel free? It can take years to learn all of that, and many players never do. The Grizzlies may have tried to play as well as they have – without their best player.
Memphis did not disclose the specifics of Morant’s injury, but he did not prevent knee problems. In November, when the start was not good for the regular season, he stiffened his left knee and then entered the league for health and safety, no 12 games. He missed many extra games towards the end of the regular season with a knee injury.
However, Adams said the team could fix it for Game 5, a fix he said was both “easy” and “replayable.” And what are they?
“I can not disclose that information, friend,” he said. “Wrap it under a wrapper. But it is not difficult. It is not something we can not do. Put it there. “
Memphis still has time to identify it. But not much, especially against the Golden State.