Not that they have any real chance at the playoffs anyway, but had the Wolves lost tonight, they would have been mathematically eliminated. Phoenix won their last tilt, so a loss tonight would have put 'Sota too far behind both the Suns and Grizzlies. Instead, Memphis came out and played like a team that was fighting for a draft pick. The Grizzlies were on the second of a back-to-back, and at the end of a 5 game road trip, so it's understandable that they'd be tired, but...well, they certainly didn't look like a squad battling for their playoff lives. Tonight's loss dropped them out of the seeding...even with Dallas' heartbreaker loss to the Warriors last night. Adelman smirked a little in the post game presser when asked if he talked to the team about wrecking someone else's postseason: That's what we told them this afternoon, that everyone we play is playing for something. So we want to go out and play as well as we can and see if we can't spoil it for them...be a factor in it. With the season essentially over at this point, that's about as good a motivator as you'll get as a coach. Rubio though, seemed to be searching for a little more. In the locker room, he touched on the desire to use the end of the year to build something, and though he was disappointed to miss the post season, he emphasized that he's aiming for 40 wins. He'd still 'consider that a good year'. By the way, his ankle is fine. I mean, when asked about it, he said It's fine. Randolph and Conley were both checked out most of the game, but the biggest surprise absentee was Memphis' vaunted defense...best in the league since Marc Gasol's return. The Wolves lit up the Grizz with 53% shooting. Pekovic sat out, but Dieng and Turiaf cruised along just fine in his stead, combining for 19 points on 9-11 shooting and 16 rebounds. Those of you following @canishoopus tonight probably noticed I was pretty impressed with Turiaf. His activity and enthusiasm were both at vintage Ronny levels. Adelman seemed genuinely surprised he was able to play at all, much less play well, remarking that the team had done a full practice five days ago and Ronny hadn't looked ready then. But he was ready tonight.
Wolves cruise by Grizzlies 102-88
Canis Hoopus | Apr 3