Suddenly, the Memphis Grizzlies seemed to be having fun again.
Ja Morant was doing the “Griddy” dance. Dillon Brooks was yelling after a big play. Stephen Adams owned the rebound. The Grizzlies were throwing down the alleys. Desmond his bane was also knocking down his 3-pointer.
Those big nights saw the Grizzlies extend their second straight loss on Thursday with a 119-106 win over the Toronto Raptors at Scotiabank Arena.
Morant and Adams scored big double-doubles to put the Grizzlies ahead (21-13). Morant had a career-high 17 assists and Adams had 14 points and 17 rebounds. Brooks leads the Grizzlies with 25 points.
Pascal Siakam led the Raptors (15-20) with 25 points on 8-of-19 shooting.
Here are some points from the game.
For subscribers:Dillon Brooks Says Memphis Grizzlies Can’t Handle It When NBA Teams Fight Back
Penny Approves:Penny Hardaway is no stranger to sneakers, acknowledging Ja Morant’s new Nike Signature shoes.
Passing unlocks the Grizzlies’ best offense
Morant looked like a kid having fun on the playground. At one point, he shared so much of the ball that he made a breakaway transition when he got the ball on play. Screened defenders. Memphis has 37 assists.
The high number of assists was due to the success of some players who were struggling. John Concher posted his double-digit results for the first time since his December 4 game against the Pistons in Detroit. Bain finished with 16 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists before he fouled him out with 7:21 left in the 4th quarter.
Santi Aldama left the game in the third quarter and did not return due to a sore left ankle.
Grizzlies keep Raptors’ big lineup to a minimum
The Raptors started a unique lineup featuring mostly forwards. Fred VanVleet didn’t play due to a back injury, so Scotty Barnes and Siakam did most of the ball handling. I responded by A hot start for the Grizzlies saw the Raptors kick off the second half, with Gary Trent his junior and Kemberch replacing Juancho his Hernangomez and Christian Coloco.
Brooks played against Siakam and put the Raptors star in every basket. The bigger Raptors allowed Memphis to use this matchup, placing Steven Adams and Jaren Jackson Jr. behind Brooks for rim protection.
Grizzlies find shooting stroke
After making four consecutive games of under 10 3-pointers, the Grizzlies are coming out of a slump in Toronto. The Grizzlies needed those 3-pointers midway through the 4th quarter when Brooks and Jackson made his 3-pointers after Bain fouled out and Toronto were within single digits of him. Brooks’ big shooter with his Knight leading the pack, Bane also knocked down his three 3-pointers. Seven Grizzlies contributed 13 3-pointers. When that happens, Memphis is hard to beat.
The Grizzlies return home for a New Year’s Eve showdown with the New Orleans Pelicans. It’s always fun to see the Pelicans and Grizzlies play. They are two of the most talented young rosters in the NBA. The Pelicans and Grizzlies split his two meetings for the first time this season.