He normally is 7 feet of unadulterated selflessness, yet Marc Gasol's coming-out party in the postseason can partly be explained by the fact that he's shrunk a bit in that area. "Now," the Grizzlies center said, "is no time to pass up shots. It's winning time. It's time to be more aggressive." While the basketball universe rightfully lauds Zach Randolph for the Grizzlies' playoff success, there is another major reason the Griz have their first series win and are even at a game apiece with the Oklahoma City Thunder going into Game 3 today in FedExForum. With Gasol's scoring and rebounding averages well above his regular-season output, the Griz could still stand tall if the Thunder is again successful in neutralizing Randolph. Gasol has five double-doubles in eight playoff games, including 13 points and 10 rebounds despite poor shooting in the Grizzlies' Game 2 defeat. He's averaging 14.8 points and 12.1 rebounds and is shooting 55 percent in the playoffs -- productivity the Griz are counting on to advance past the Thunder in the Western Conference semifinals. "He's probably as focused as he's been all year long in any stretch of games," Griz coach Lionel Hollins said. The Grizzlies' balanced post attack is what makes them a handful in today's NBA, where perimeter players seem to dominate. Gasol and Randolph play together in a high-low system that makes it difficult to front the post.
Grizzlies' Gasol coming into his own by being more aggressive
Memphis Commercial Appeal | May 7