Memphis Grizzlies at Los Angeles Clippers (-5.5, 181.5)
Clippers lead series 1-0.
The Memphis Grizzlies held opponents below 90 points per game in the regular season but were torched for 112 in the opener of their playoff series against the Los Angeles Clippers. Memphis will need to improve on the defensive end in Monday’s Game 2 and also take a more aggressive approach on the boards after Los Angeles had a 47-23 edge in Saturday’s 21-point victory. The Clippers have won eight straight contests.
Seven Los Angeles players scored in double figures in the opener and four of them were guards. Chris Paul had 23 points, Eric Bledsoe tallied 15 on 7-of-7 shooting, Chauncey Billups scored 14 and Jamal Crawford had 13. Memphis isn’t used to being pushed around on the glass and its top two rebounders – Zach Randolph with four and Marc Gasol with two – combined for just six boards. “They had two or three guys going to the glass every time,” point guard Mike Conley said. “They were jumping over us and using their athleticism.”
TV: 10:30 p.m. ET, TNT, Fox Sports Tennessee (Memphis), Prime Ticket (Los Angeles)
ABOUT THE GRIZZLIES: Randolph wasn’t overly concerned about the Game 1 loss since the teams played a seven-game playoff series last season, but admitted he would be worried if Memphis returns home down 0-2. Gasol was highly disappointed with his club’s work on the boards,which included allowing Los Angeles to grab 14 on the offensive glass en route to a 25-5 edge in second-chance points. “That’s not acceptable,” Gasol said. “Once we made a stop, they kept running in and getting offensive rebounds and second-chance points. We have to be better than that. The rebounds were the difference.” The 23 boards were the lowest the Grizzlies have ever grabbed in a playoff game.
ABOUT THE CLIPPERS: While Los Angeles dominated the boards, power forward Blake Griffin was a relative non-factor as he deals with back spasms. Griffin had just 10 points and five rebounds in 25-plus minutes before fouling out. He and Randolph waged a physical battle that included Griffin being sent sprawling to the floor on more than a few occasions. “I’m ready for however many games it’s going to take,” Griffin said afterward. “If that’s the way he wants to play, let’s do it.” Center DeAndre Jordan led the Clippers with eight rebounds while forwards Caron Butler and Lamar Odom grabbed seven apiece.
* Clippers are 5-0 ATS in their last five home games.
* Grizzlies are 4-0 ATS in their last four games following an ATS loss.
* Under is 9-2 in Grizzlies’ last 11 overall.
* Over is 6-1 in Clippers’ last seven home games.
1. Bledsoe also had six rebounds and four assists in a superb all-around Game 1 performance in which he played 18 minutes.
2. Conley was outplayed by Paul in the four regular-season meetings and had just 12 points in the opener.
3. Memphis allowed more than 112 points just once in the regular season.