Spurs Vs. Grizzlies, Game 4: Memphis Cruises To 104-86 Victory Over San Antonio

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Second-Half Blowout Of Spurs Shocking Even To Grizzlies Believers

The manner in which the Memphis Grizzlies deconstructed the San Antonio Spurs on Monday in taking a 3-1 NBA Playoffs series lead was striking; the Spurs usually do the whole blitzkrieg-out-of-nowhere bit, and rarely are the victims of such a bumrush. The Grizzlies smoked the Spurs by 15 points in the crucial third quarter, quite possibly ending San Antonio's hope for a fifth championship in the Tim Duncan/Gregg Popovich era.

As it turns out, even those who predicted a Grizzlies' upset didn't see that dominating run coming. From SB Nation's Straight Outta Vancouver:

[T]o see this Grizzlies team and its utter disregard for the Spurs and what The Spurs means in the NBA, and NBA playoff, lore, to see them just walk right on by all the frills and things that we believe -- and usually do -- hold some water when the postseason comes around -- the experience, the pedigree, the rings -- and to see what it means when a basketball team is simply better at basketball in a given series than another team is to actually see one of those "what-if" situations playing out in full force.

That's what makes this one different from the Mavs-Warriors of a few years ago: Dallas had just let a championship slip through their grasp a year before. When they fell to Golden State, it was the continued crumbling of a franchise that couldn't quite make it to the top. San Antonio has been there, they're seen as champions, making Game Four all the more shocking and impressive when you think that the Grizzlies simply won't let these guys catch their breath.

It was shocking last year when the Spurs were swept 4-0 by the Phoenix Suns in the second round, but San Antonio looked different -- excellent -- this season, and the Grizzlies are supposed to be too green to do this. It may not be as visceral an assault as Warriors over Mavericks, but it's something to behold nonetheless.

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Spurs Vs. Grizzlies: Memphis The Ones That Look Like Playoff Veterans

Mike Conley led a balanced attack, finishing with 15 points and seven assists, as the Memphis Grizzlies handled the San Antonio Spurs, 104-86, in Game 4 of the Western Conference quarterfinals.

Darrell Arthur supplied 14 points off the bench and Tony Allen netted 12 in a starting role for Memphis, which now has a commanding 3-1 lead in the series and will try to close it out on Wednesday in San Antonio.

It's a shock for many reasons, not the least of which is that we're talking about the Spurs. Other than the Lakers, who's more playoff-tested than the Spurs?

The Spurs fell apart in the third quarter. They turned the ball over seven times after doing so a total of eight times in the first half. The Spurs took just two free throws in the entire quarter. Meanwhile, Memphis was able to dominate the second-half thanks to hot shooting and a bewildered Spurs defense.

Wednesday, the Grizzlies will be the fourth No. 8 seed to take a two-game advantage into a potential series clincher since 1984 and look to be the first 8-seed to win a first-round series since Golden State did it in 2007.

Be sure to check out our Mavericks vs. Blazers hub. For more on Portland, visit Blazer’s Edge. For more on Dallas, visit Mavs Moneyball and SB Nation Dallas.   

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Spurs Vs. Grizzlies Score: Memphis Finishes Off San Antonio 104-86

The Memphis Grizzlies dominated the San Antonio Spurs in the second half on their way to a 104-86 Game 4 victory and a commanding 3-1 lead in the series. Memphis outscored the Spurs 56-36 in the second half with inspired play at both ends. Memphis turned up the pressure forcing the Spurs into turnovers and used their athleticism to push the ball up the floor. 

Memphis had five players in double figures with Mike Conley leading the way with 15. Darrell Arthur chipped in 14 points off the bench. The Grizzlies shot a sizzling 51% from the floor but their strongest contribution came in forcing the Spurs into 17 turnovers in the game. Memphis scored 18 points off of those turnovers which propelled them in the second half. 

San Antonio was led by Tony Parker's 23 points with most of that damage coming in the first half. Manu Ginobli tossed in 14 but the Spurs only got 10 points combined from its starting frontcourt of Tim Duncan, Antonio McDyess, and Richard Jefferson. Jefferson was held scoreless in 27 minutes. 

Game 5 will be on Wednesday as the Spurs try and regroup back at home in San Antonio. 

Be sure to check our Spurs vs. Grizzlies hub for full series coverage. For more on the Grizzlies, visit Straight Outta Vancouver. For more on the Spurs, visit Pounding The Rock.    

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Spurs Vs. Grizzlies Score: Memphis Dominates The Third, Leads 78-65

Memphis came roaring out of halftime outscoring 30-15 on their way to a 78-65 lead. Mike Conley has had a strong game with 15 points and four assists. Zach Randolph is also in double figures with 11 points and eight rebounds. Memphis turned up the pressure on the Spurs forcing seven turnovers in the quarter which got the Grizzlies running and in a good rhythm. 

The Spurs backcourt has been good. Tony Parker has 23 points while Manu Ginobli has 12. However, San Antonio hasn't gotten much from its frontcourt as Richard Jefferson, Tim Duncan, and Antonio McDyess have combined for 10 points. Jefferson is scoreless in 18 minutes of action. The Spurs desperately need to take care of the ball if they are going to contain the much more athletic Grizzlies. 

Be sure to check our Spurs vs. Grizzlies hub for full series coverage. For more on the Grizzlies, visit Straight Outta Vancouver. For more on the Spurs, visit Pounding The Rock.    

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Spurs Vs. Grizzlies Score: Tony Parker Lights Up Memphis In First Half

San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker has been unstoppable in the first half, scoring 19 points to lift the Spurs to a 50-48 halftime lead over the Memphis Grizzlies. Parker has yet to miss, hitting all seven shots from the field and all four of his free throws in the first half while carving up the Memphis defense. With Parker firing, the rest of the Spurs had a front row seat to the show as he handled the scoring load early.

George Hill provided a lift off the bench, scoring eight points. Manu Ginobili had seven first-half points, with Tiago Splitter adding six. Tim Duncan had just two points in the first half, but did grab a team-high five rebounds. Gibobili also had a team-high three assists.

Zach Randolph and Mike Conley led the way for the Grizzlies with nine points apiece in the half. O.J. Mayo provided a lift off the bench with eight points. Greivis Vasquez added seven points off the bench, as well.

Be sure to check our Spurs vs. Grizzlies hub for full series coverage. For more on the Grizzlies, visit Straight Outta Vancouver. For more on the Spurs, visit Pounding The Rock.

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Spurs Vs. Grizzlies Score: Tony Parker Gives San Antonio Early Lead

The San Antonio Spurs jumped out to an early in Game 4 of their NBA playoff matchup with the Memphis Grizzlies, 26-21. The Spurs are looking to even the series on the road in Memphis and trail the Grizzlies in the best-of-seven series, 2-1. Thanks to a quick start by Tony Parker, San Antonio took the early advantage and head into the second quarter with a five-point lead.

Parker led all scorers in the first quarter with eight points. Antonio McDyess had four points, with George Hill and Matt Bonner each adding four points off the bench. Tim Duncan had two points and three rebounds in the first 12 minutes.

Zach Randolph has a team-high six points for the Grizzlies thus far. Mike Conley has four points and Shane Battier added another four points off the bench. Tony Allen’s decision to shave his Grizzly haircut seems to be hampering him thus far as he’s scoreless in nine minutes of floor time.

Be sure to check our Spurs vs. Grizzlies hub for full series coverage. For more on the Grizzlies, visit Straight Outta Vancouver. For more on the Spurs, visit Pounding The Rock.

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Spurs Vs. Grizzlies, Game 4: Memphis Shoots For Another Stunner

The Memphis Grizzlies are cooking, and the San Antonio Spurs may not have the right ingredients to catch up. No first-round series since 2008's Celtics-Hawks set has been as improbable as this match-up, with the Grizzlies holding a 2-1 series lead. Should Memphis pull off the victory, it'd be the biggest upset since 2007's Warriors-Mavericks series, but maybe bigger. That Warriors team seemed to fly out of nowhere, and took down the league's best team. The Spurs are frankly a step below those Mavs, but Golden State has Baron Davis, Stephen Jackson and Jason Richardson. These Grizzlies have Zach Randolph and Tony Allen. It's a bizarre team in a bizarre situation.

The Spurs are supposed to be too solid, too resourceful to get clubbed by an inferior foe, but perhaps that's part of the Grizzlies' advantage: they are too weird to conquer by conventional means. The Spurs defend three-pointers amazingly well, and rebound, and don't foul, and score in the paint. Memphis doesn't shoot three-pointers, kills the offensive glass and scores even more in paint. They are like a Spurs' antibiotic, in the sense that the antibiotic uses some dead bacteria to cure the virus. (Note: I did not go to medicial school, and still don't know what causes a virus vs. a non-virus illness. I should read the posters in the doc's office more carefully. Sports!)

Zach Randolph used the force in Game 3, and no one is convinced the Spurs are prepared to stop it. The smart solution -- as our own Sebastian Pruiti has written a few times -- is to drop a second defender onto Z-Bo in the post. But San Antonio is resisting this strategy! Gregg Popovich is as astute as they come, and must be worried about something other than Z-Bo dousing San Antonio with fire in the paint. But it's a glaring issue, especially with the Spurs getting closer and closer to being on the ropes.

On the other end, Tony Parker is coming under some amount of criticism; he's shooting just 34 percent from the field, and is quite plainly being outplayed by Mike Conley -- that Mike Conley -- in a playoff series. That's not something you want on your resumé. What the Spurs will do to help wake Parker (a former Finals MVP) remains to be seen; I vote for something sudden and jarring.

Be sure to check our Spurs vs. Grizzlies hub for full series coverage. For more on the Grizzlies, visit Straight Outta Vancouver. For more on the Spurs, visit Pounding The Rock.

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