Durant was somewhat absent, missing his first six attempts, a combination of the typical grit/grind Memphis defense and a surprisingly cold evening from the guy with three scoring titles. He got his points due to frequent trips to the line, although his three misses from the line were uncharacteristic for a guy who typically shoots around 90 percent from there.
On the other side, Zach Randolph was exactly as the Grizzlies want him: bullish, nifty, and irascible around the hoop, scoring 16 points on just 10 shots, drilling all six of his free throws.
The Thunder quickly jumped out to a 7-0 lead after Serge Ibaka drilled a three with the clock expiring to open the game, but Randolph and Marc Gasol quickly made the game 9-9. The teams traded buckets for a bit, but Durant finally connected on a mid-range jumper as the Thunder scored the final six points of the period to take a 23-18 lead at the break.
The Grizzlies would come out hot in the second quarter, with their bench scoring eight quick points on an 11-2 run to put the Thunder down, 29-24. A pair of Durant free throws and a subsequent jumper would cut the lead to 36-35 with a little over six minutes left, but then the Thunder wouldn't hit a field goal for the rest of the period allowing the Grizzlies to start to pull away with a 14-3 run.
1. Can the Grizz keep avoiding turnovers?
Yes, alarmingly so. Memphis didn't commit a single turnover in the first quarter, eventually giving in with 5:25 left in the second quarter when Tayshaun Prince got called for a tough-to-tell traveling call. 17 minutes of game-time without a turnover. That's incredible. They'd eventually end up with four turnovers, but that's just half as many as the Thunder.
2. Is this Mike Conley's breakout?
Not exactly. He had one notably strong play, where he stopped and started before hitting a shot in the act of being knocked by Reggie Jackson into the photographers behind the basket, and the and-1 that gave Memphis a one-point lead. But for the most part, he was lackluster, going 3 for 9 with seven points, failing to finish around the rim more often than not, and three assists.
3. Will Kevin Martin show up?
Yes, and considering Durant's off night, it was nice. Martin would hit three of his four shots and finish the half with eight points. The Martin signature dribble-to-the-top-of-the-key-followed-by-a-super-quick-pullup was water, and he closed the first quarter by sprinting past the Memphis defense after a Conley airball to finish a baseball pass from Derek Fisher with a dunk.