What beginnings! In order to raise the curtain on this confrontation that promised sparks on paper, the Grizzlies and the Wolves did not disappoint and made an impressive offensive spectacle. At the FedEx boiling forum, the intensity and level of play were on par, with two teams competing head-to-head.
Then the match turned in favor of Minnesota in the last quarter. In the “money time” of this resolute attacking match, while maintaining a high offensive tempo, Wolves raised their level of defensive play during the final chapter (the Grizzlies scored only 25 points, in 7/19), and managed to make the difference (130-117).
Over the course of the match, Chris Finch’s men fired 50% (45/90), driven by strong performances from Karl-Anthony Towns and Anthony Edwards (65 points for two), and owner Precious Beasley off the bench (23 points). On the Memphis side, Ja Morant collected 32 points, 4 rebounds and 8 assists, but struggled in the final quarter against the Wolves’ good collective defense.
Abroad, “KAT” and his squad were badly damaged from the first match. Confident after winning the “play” against the Clippers, the Wolves have long teeth and made clear to the Grizzlies who may have underestimated them too much. The series is still far from over, but it’s off to a fast start. Loud attacks, first-class scorers, first-class atmosphere and “trash talk”…
What to remember
External photography, the tenth factor. Authors 16/41 Behind the bow (39%), Wolves made the difference with their overseas title. Because on the contrary, the Grizzlies struggled to be effective in this area (7/27), and got involved with a questionable shot selection at the end of the match.
Stephen Adams, in the closet already? The New Zealand pivot was completely ghostly during this match 1: 0 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists and 4 fouls in 24 short minutes… in great difficulty against Karl-Anthony Towns movement, ineffective in ‘switching’ against D’Angelo was Russell And Anthony Edwards, a former Thunder and Pelican player, is a problem. The ultra offensive formation isn’t really the best, and his coach could turn more into Brandon Clarke, the most mobile at 5, for the rest of the series.
✅ “KAT” and “Ant”. The two players signed an exceptional match. The first, who wanted to catch up after the “failed play” against the Clippers, took revenge on the weak Grizzlies: 29 points (11/18) and 13 rebounds! The second made his first playoff match one of his career greatest. The back crushed all defensive covers for the Grizzlies (36 points at 12/23, 6 assists and 2 blocks), and showed ease in an impressively hostile environment for a player of his age.
✅ owner beasley. Off the bench, he made Wolverhampton’s top scorer useful, with 23 points at 8/14 including 4/10 at 3 points. He composed a crucial “money time” shot to push his team up to +10, and also got a warm blue in defense, with several very good passes against Ja Morant and Tyus Jones.
✅⛔️ Ja Morante. His stats sheet was darkened at the end of the game (32 points in 8/18, 16/20 in free throws, 4 rebounds and 8 assists), but all make a mixed impression. Because the All-Star leader scored 19 out of 32 points in the first half, and was less severe after the break. It must be said that Wolves seriously raised the tone in defense activity in the second half, and managed to limit Ja Morant’s impact, especially near the circle.
⛔️ D’Angelo Russell. The leader missed his game 1, no more, no less. Despite a pretty big shot in the “money time”, he was very disappointed, especially due to the chaos in the selection of shots (2/11). He limits damage with his eight passes, but Wolves clearly need to improve in attack for the rest of the series. Because his friends Towns and Edwards may not score 65 points every night.
Game 2: At night from Tuesday to Wednesday at 02:30.