Saturday, May 11, 2013
Gasol, Grizzlies 'D' come up big
By ESPN Stats & Information
Just as it was in 2011, the Memphis Grizzlies won Game 3 of their matchup with the Oklahoma City Thunder to take a 2-1 series lead.
The Thunder had one of their worst shooting days on Saturday.
That one ended with a Thunder triumph in seven games. We'll see the direction in which this one goes, but first, a look at some of the statistical highlights from this game.
Key to the game: Thunder get looks, but can’t score
As you can see in the shooting zone chart atop this story, the Thunder were cold from almost every spot on the court.
Oklahoma City scored 81 points, its fewest this postseason, and shot 36.4 percent from the field—it’s second-lowest field-goal percentage in a postseason game since moving to Oklahoma City.
The only game in which they shot worse was on April 23, 2011-- shot 36.3 percent in a 97-94 win over the Denver Nuggets in Game 3 of the Western Conference First Round
The Grizzlies defense thwarted Oklahoma City’s chances at the rim in the second half.
In the first half, the Thunder took 21 shot attempts from inside five feet. In the second half, they only took seven such attempts.
Difference-Maker: The value of Marc Gasol
Marc Gasol was the Defensive Player of the Year for a reason, and that came through with how the Grizzlies defense performed with him on and off the court.
In Gasol’s 36 minutes, 37 seconds, the Grizzlies held the Thunder to 31 percent shooting from the field and outscored them 66-52.
In Gasol’s 11 minutes on the bench, the Thunder outscored the Grizzlies, 29-21 and shot 48 percent.
Durant a non-factor in the fourth
After going 8-for-15 from the field and 5-for-7 from the free throw line in the first three quarters, Kevin Durant was 1-for-4 from the field and 0-for-2 from the free throw line in the final 12 minutes.
This marked only the second time in his career that Durant finished a fourth quarter with an 0-for-2 from the line.
The Grizzlies tried five defenders against Durant in the first half without success. In the fourth quarter, he dealt with two primary defenders- Tony Allen and Quincy Pondexter.
Durant finished 2-for-7 against Allen. He finished 3-for-5 against Pondexter, but missed the two shots he took when guarded by Pondexter in the fourth quarter.
Home sweeter Home
The Grizzlies are now 11-3 in home playoff games over the last three seasons (4-0 this season).
Memphis was winless in 6 home playoff games in franchise history previous to 2011.
A very even series
Game 3 of the series featured 13 more lead changes. The teams have now swapped leads 49 times in three games. Elias notes that is the most lead changes in the first three games of a series of any playoff series played since 2000.