Just got back from FedExForum – here are 13 thoughts on what I saw….
- The Grizzlies smoked the Nuggets by 30, 99-69. The game was never competitive.
- Memphis has now won 5 straight, and has pushed its record to a mind-boggling 34-12 on the year – good for 2nd place (by 2 games over Portland) in the Western Conference.
- I say mind boggling because it is still difficult for a 37 year old, life long Memphian to grasp the reality that a genuine NBA championship contender is playing home games in downtown Memphis.
- Make no mistake about it, the Grizzlies are genuine NBA championship contenders.
- Don’t believe me? Take it from TNT Analyst Charles Barkley:
— TurnerSportsPR (@TurnerSportsPR) January 30, 2015
- A lot can change between now and the playoffs (most notably injuries – like the one Vince Carter suffered tonight) but I’m not sure Memphians have fully digested the fact that the Grizzlies are arguably the best basketball team in the world.
- For all the “Believe Memphis” hoopla – there really wasn’t a good reason to, ya know, actually believe Memphis could win the NBA Championship last year. Not after the Spurs crushed Memphis’ spirit in the 2013 Western Conference Finals, and amid the tumult which consumed the Grizzlies organization immediately afterward.
- This year, there are good reasons to believe. Or at least right now, on January 29th , there appear to be.
- One primary reason? Offense. The Grizz are top 10 in NBA offensive efficiency – to go along with their always stout (top 3) defense.
- Another reason? ZBo.
- This is clearly the best Zach Randolph has looked in several years – he finished tonight with 15pts, 17rbs – and just has a bounce to his game he hasn’t had in quite some time.
- The Carter injury did in fact look serious – we’ll know more on Friday.
- Next up for the Grizz – an 8pm Saturday home date with OKC. The Thunder are still fighting to get back into the playoff picture. They currently sit 3.5 games out of the 8th and final playoff spot in the West.