Los Angeles Clippers vs. Memphis Grizzlies
7:30 p.m. PST
February 23, 2015
FOX Prime Ticket/ NBA TV
Video of the Day
Throw it down one time, Pera!
1. How’s Jeff Green fitting in?
Ari Alexander, WMC Action News 5 Sports, (@AriA1exander): Jeff Green is fitting in pretty well so far. He’s definitely the most purely athletic offensive player on the team and can get his own shot. I do think he’s more useful as the first option off the bench than the fourth option in the starting lineup, but it looks like Joerger prefers having Green start at 3.
Law Murray, (@LawMurrayTheNU): Well, Memphis is 14-3 since trading for Green. No complaints from the team here. But the question was how is Green fitting in. He hasn’t been impressive after 17 games with the Grizzlies, shooting less than 41 percent from the field, under 30 percent from three, and averaging less than a rebound a quarter. He’s a guy who can get a dozen points a night, but Memphis is much better defensively when he’s sitting right now:
Seth Partnow, (@SethPartnow): Just dandy. It’s notable he was acquired for Tayshaun Prince as Green has been something like the in-his-prime version. Not a star, but able to fill in wherever and however needed.
2. Who’s been more impressive this year: Marc Gasol or Zach Randolph?
Alexander: This is a tough question because ZBo has shown that he’s been the most important player to this team (36-9 with him, 4-5 without him), but Marc Gasol has taken his game to another level. His willingness to be aggressive on offense has made the team less prone to droughts. So, Gasol, but it’s close.
Murray: Gasol is the All-Star, and he’s having a great contract-year at the age of 30. He’s in his best shape of the last five seasons, he’s leading the offense and getting to the free throw line more than ever, and he’s maintained a solid defensive presence. Don’t get me wrong here; Z-Bo has been outstanding too, churning out yet another season of double-doubles. But the Grizzlies have asked Gasol to do more than ever, and he’s come through in a big way.
Partnow: It’s often said again gracefully is one of the tougher things to do in sports. I’d never insult Z-Bo by calling him “graceful,” but it is quite impressive the way he’s willingly allowed Gasol and Mike Conley to become the team’s focus.
3. Are the Grizzlies still the Clippers’ biggest rivals?
Alexander: That depends on how the Clippers view Memphis. I think the Grizzlies fans are getting to the point where they might hate OKC more than the Clippers, almost purely due to recency effect. The Clippers and the Warriors have their own little thing going, which has taken the Grizzlies hate down for Clips fans. When they play each other, it’s still intense, but right now I think they’re each secondary rivals.
Murray: No, they’re not. And even if they were, tonight’s game would not have the same level of acrimony with Blake Griffin on the shelf. The Clippers’ biggest rival right now is the team they played most recently in the postseason and the last two Christmases – the team they’re looking up to right now in the Pacific Division, the Golden State Warriors.
Partnow: If everyone is the biggest rival, no one is. If reports of Clippers being widely reviled are accurate, tough to single Memphis out from among that crowd.