Los Angeles Lakers: OJ Mayo

Lakers Late Night Replay vs. Memphis

March, 13, 2012
3/13/12
8:46
PM PT
By the Kamenetzky Brothers
ESPNLosAngeles.com
Archive
Very big, very hard fought win for the Lakers tonight in Memphis. 116-111 in double OT.

On tonight's show, we review all the high points, including:
  • Massive games from Kobe Bryant and Andrew Bynum.
  • The importance of a big comeback on the road -- L.A. was down 17 in the third -- against a good team (even one missing two of its three best players in Zach Randolph and Rudy Gay).
  • The dynamic between Bynum and Pau Gasol. How much does the presence of one impact the other?
  • Dwight Howard's "roll the dice" comments tonight following Orlando's win over Miami. He now says he wants to stay in Orlando through the deadline. Does that impact L.A.'s plans heading into Thursday?
Watch live streaming video from espnlosangeles at livestream.com

Lakers vs. Grizzlies: What to watch with 3 Shades of Blue

January, 2, 2011
1/02/11
10:59
AM PT
Kamenetzky By Brian Kamenetzky
ESPNLosAngeles.com
Archive
The Memphis Grizzlies haven't been a playoff team since the 2005-06 season, but last year Lionel Hollins' crew quietly took some steps toward respectability, pushing its record as high as 38-33 before a 2-9 finish. At the very least, it was competitive enough to require one of Kobe Bryant's best games of the 2009-10 campaign last February in Memphis.

Joe Murphy/Getty Images
The Grizzlies have been a little better since they decided to put OJ Mayo on the bench, but are still struggling to meet this season's loftier expectations.



This year, in a Western Conference with a little less depth, the Grizzlies were considered by some to be dark horse candidates in the race for the final playoff spot. Not a team to be ignored, at least not simply because the front of the jersey says "Memphis" and they draw about 19 people to FedEx Forum for a typical home game. But after Saturday's 98-92 loss in Utah, the Grizzlies are 14-19, three games behind an 8-seed. Not out of it, but not at the level of, say, Houston, another team currently on the wrong side of the postseason cutoff but playing good ball after a horrid start.

The Grizzlies have, though, already knocked off the Lakers this season, with a 98-96 win on their home floor, so while Memphis' record may not leap off the page, the champs ought to be acutely aware of how possible it is to lose to them. (L.A. also rolled the Grizzlies -- playing without Zach Randolph -- on Nov. 2, back in the salad days of the eight-game win streak.)

To get a better feel for where the Grizzlies are these days, I hit up Chip Crain from 3 Shades of Blue, the top-shelf blog dedicated to all things Grizzlies.

1. How has the dynamic on the floor changed with OJ Mayo coming off the bench? Has the move accomplished what it set out to do?

Good question. The team has a better balance when OJ is coming off the bench with Xavier Henry or Tony Allen providing better defense at the two guard with their size. Unfortunately Mayo hasn't always provided the scoring off the bench the team has hoped to see. When he has, the team is able to keep two scoring threats on the court at all times, but when Mayo struggles the second team doesn't provide enough spark to give the starters much rest.

The Grizzlies have Rudy Gay, Zach Randolph, Mike Conley and Marc Gasol as scoring threats, so there are plenty of players capable of scoring when Mayo is out of the lineup. Mayo is the only true scoring threat coming off the bench right now. Defensively, he struggled against opposing shooting guards earlier in the season. The team is better on that end with Mayo coming off the bench.

(Read full post)

SPONSORED HEADLINES

TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Kobe Bryant
PTS AST STL MIN
22.3 5.6 1.3 34.5
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsJ. Hill 8.0
AssistsK. Bryant 5.6
StealsR. Price 1.6
BlocksE. Davis 1.3