Sat04192014

Sports

Dallas rolls on – and over – the Grizz

grizdallas 600Brevity and directness often mark post-game assessments when the team you are trying to catch and pass for a playoff spot comes onto your home court and beats you solidly.

"They played good. We couldn't stop them," said the Grizzlies Zach Randolph after the Dallas Mavericks exited the FedExForum court with a 110-96 win Wednesday night. "They've got a great defensive team. They play well and they execute."

Randolph led the Grizzlies with 25 points. Late in the third quarter, however, Dallas seized a lead they would not relinquish partly by bringing Randolph under control in the paint. They maintained the lead going into the fourth quarter and led by as many as 17.

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Calathes steps up as a stand-in as Grizz win

nick griz_600With their once guard-heavy roster skimmed down to two backup point guards, the Grizzlies chose to insert Nick Calathes into the starting lineup following Conley's injury against the Minnesota Timberwolves last Friday night.

Usually hitting the floor in limited minutes so Conley can take a breather, Calathes answered the starter's call of duty Saturday at the FedExForum, helping lead the Grizz to a 99-90 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks. Before tip-off, the Grizzlies announced that Conley would be out for at least a week.

"I knew coach had a lot of confidence in me," said Calathes, who scored a career-best 22 points. "He started me. My job was to run the team. The big thing was to just get the win and not turn the ball over."

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Ice-storm audience gets shot of hot Tigers

tigericebox 600Wednesday night (Jan. 29) North Carolina and Georgia Tech were scheduled for primetime coverage, but thanks to an ice storm in Atlanta the University of Memphis-Central Florida game was upgraded to ESPN2 coverage. And the nation got another look at what this Memphis squad has to offer.

Now, Central Florida has an elite caliber player in Isaiah Sykes. He could have been the best player on the floor for either team, but his 24 points, 12 rebounds, and 5 assists weren't enough for the Knights.

Knotted at 39, the Knights looked poised to upset the #22 ranked Tigers after the first 20 minutes. But those hopes would be dashed in the second half as Memphis rallied for a ten-point win 69-59.

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How to become a bona fide Super Bowl fan in one easy lesson

superbowlmyron 600Are you ready for the Super Bowl? You know, the big game at the end of the football season? Have you been religiously glued to your TV sets each and every Sunday afternoon watching every game, analyzing every single play and offering color commentary on your Facebook timeline?

Well, this week's column is not for you. Lol!

No...really! Somewhere there's someone out there who just doesn't get it. There's actually a person who's thinking even as I speak, "I don't get it." There's someone out there who has not watched a single game this season but will be amongst some of the biggest football fans in the world on this Sunday. They'll be pretending to be enjoying the game, but thinking to themselves, "I don't get it." They will be easy to spot because they will be the ones going to the restroom "after" the commercials.

 

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Tigers reflect Pastner’s positive energy

crwaford3 600

University of Memphis head coach Josh Pastner has a pretty firm grasp on his position, but when the day comes and he steps down from his job there are plenty of fields in which he could pursue a new career.

To name a few: motivational speaker, yoga instructor, Hindu Brahman, and last but not least, a proton.

The common link: Positive energy!

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Grizzlies build on tradition with MLK Celebration Day

grizzmlkThe Grizzlies migrated to the Bluff City 12 years ago, intertwining the franchise's history with the rich southern roots of Memphis. Each year since, the Grizzlies have hosted Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Day at the FedExForum, honoring icons for their contributions to civil and human rights.

On Monday (Jan. 20), three more individuals were honored during an afternoon wrapped around the Grizzlies confrontation with the New Orleans Pelicans.

The Grizzlies hosted the 2014 event along with the National Civil Rights Museum, the City of Memphis and Shelby County. NBA Hall of Famer Bernard King and former NBA star JoJo White were presented with Ninth Annual National Civil Rights Sports Legacy Awards, courtesy of FedEx. Former NBA stalwart Dikembe Mutombo, a 2007 honoree who could not attend that year's presentation because of bad weather and a canceled, also was on hand to receive his tribute.

 

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‘Future’ Tigers log big minutes in romp over LeMoyne-Owen

LOCtigers 600When 14,000 Tiger fans gathered this past weekend (Jan. 18), they thought that they were merely attending a basketball game. As they filed into the FedExForum, little did they know that they were stepping into a time machine for a trip to the future.

The game began much like all the others, with the regular starters taking the floor for the opening tip. Yet, it didn't take long to reach 88 miles per hour! Suddenly, everyone in attendance was witnessing the future of the Tiger basketball program right before their eyes.

Heading into the season, Memphis had claimed one of the nation's top recruiting classes. However, four senior guards, a senior transfer (David Pellom), and a sophomore standout (Shaq Goodwin) have kept many of the highly talented players on the bench.

 

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Staxtacular 2014 – ‘Suit Up And Play’

grizzsuit 600One thing is for certain. The Memphis Grizzlies have formed great partnerships in the Memphis community. And with one particular affiliation, a special bond has been established.

The Stax Music Academy has not been the same since the Memphis Grizzlies teamed up with the Soulsville Foundation to host one of the largest fundraising events of the year. Just one week after the Grizz Gala, local movers and shakers gathered on Saturday at the Stax Museum for the 10th Annual Staxtacular event. The evening's theme was "Suit Up and Play."

The hosts of the night were Grizz Players Mike Conley, Tony Allen and Quincy Pondexter. Joining them were newcomers Tayshaun Prince, Courtney Lee, James Johnson and Jamaal Franklin, who experienced their first Staxtacular and were more than proud to take part in the festivities.

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Grizz escape Kings

grizzkings 600Whew!

The Grizzlies reached deep into their desire-to-win tank and pulled out a thrilling 91-90 victory over the Sacramento Kings at the FedExForum on Friday night.

It went right down to the final buzzer, with center Marc Gasol getting just enough of a tipped ball aimed for the King's Demarcus Cousins, who was camped underneath Sacramento's basket.

 

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Tigers lose to UConn no matter how you look at it

uofmsad 600UofM fan: The new American Athletic Conference (AAC) is awesome!

UConn fan: (squinting) How so?

UofM fan: Well, for one the Tigers have gotten much better exposure this year. We have been on a major network 8 times in 16 games.

UConn fan: (sarcastically) Hate to break it to you, but that's what it was like it in the Big East for us in the past.

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Griz chemistry too much for Thunder

grizzdunk 600Memphis Grizzlies fans were given a real surprise on Tuesday night (Jan. 14). All-Star center Marc Gasol hit the floor of the FedExForum to start against one of the top teams in the NBA after missing 23 consecutive games with a left knee injury.

The reigning Defensive Player of the Year sported a black brace but it didn't get in the way of helping his team outlast the Oklahoma City Thunder 90 to 87 in a high-energy game that kept the crowd on edge.

Gasol's return triggered a standing ovation from the 17,177 in attendance. He responded with 12 points in 24 minutes of play.

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Grizzlies ride ‘good feeling’ in win over Hawks

grizzhawks 600The NBA is soon approaching the end of the first half of the season and the Memphis Grizzlies appear to have found a groove. Players are settling into their roles. Missing Marc Gasol, Quincy Pondexter and Tony Allen due to injury, on Sunday (Jan. 12) they faced the Atlanta Hawks, rallying for a fourth quarter outburst that resulted in a 108-101 victory.

"We played really, really well together and they looked like they were having fun playing together, which is really a treat when you are a coach and you enjoy being around a great group of guys," said Grizzlies head coach Dave Joerger.

"They share the basketball and they make extra passes. They are helping each other on defense and no one is pointing fingers. It's all of us in it and trying to help each other. It's a good feeling right now."

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Suns fade late as Conley’s stardom rises

conley 600The Memphis Grizzlies have learned to listen to floor general Mike Conley. They depend on him to lead the team.

Lately, the Grizz's starting point guard has taken his ability to do that up to another level.

Conley rallied Memphis in a late fourth quarter takeover to breeze pass the Phoenix Suns on Friday (Jan. 10) at FedExForum with a 104-99 victory. Fresh off of a 30-point performance on Tuesday in an overtime loss against the San Antonio Spurs, he tallied a career-tying 31 points along with seven assists. And he didn't commit a single turnover.

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