Jenni Carlson: Thunder energy drained Grizzlies
Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins mused before Wednesday night's game whether coming off a triple-overtime game would affect his guys more than the Thunder.
Videoview all videos
May 12Darnell Mayberry and Jenni Carlson discuss how Game 5...
May 12Nick Collison and OKC's defense completely stifled...
Photoview all 85 photos
NewsOK Related Articles
“Everybody keeps talking about 22-year-old legs,” he said in a not-so-veiled reference to the Thunder's young stars.
He smiled a bit.
“Hey, 56 minutes is 56 minutes,” he said in a not-so-veiled reference to Kevin Durant, who played that long Monday night.
Hollins didn't sound worried about the Thunder's young legs.
Maybe he should've been.
Thunder 99, Grizzlies 72.
On a night when the momentum in this playoff series swung even more toward Oklahoma City, the boys in blue were the more energetic team. The pep in their step led to a blowout that might just demoralize the Grizzlies.
“You beat good teams by really executing very well and by having good effort,” Thunder coach Scott Brooks said. “We did both of them tonight.”
That execution and effort led to easy baskets.
The Thunder scored 46 points in the paint. Those aren't all easy baskets, mind you, but any time you get the ball that close to the rim, you've got a great chance of scoring.
The Thunder converted.
The Thunder had 18 second-chance points. The Grizzlies had nine.
Oklahoma City had 20 fast-break points. Memphis had seven.
“A lot of guys got out in transition because everybody was rebounding the ball tonight,” Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook said. “We got a lot of long-tip rebounds and got out in transition.”
Often, getting to those long boards is all about effort, and often, giving that extra effort is all about having the energy to go a little faster, to reach a little quicker, to fight a little harder.
The Thunder had that extra energy Wednesday night.
Sometimes being the youngest team in the playoffs isn't such a bad thing.
“I don't think fatigue was an issue; it was more our effort,” Grizzlies big man Marc Gasol insisted. “We let down. We started off pretty good, playing intense, helping each other. Then when we got down a little bit, we gave up too easily.”
Sports Photo Galleriesview all
VIDEOS FROM NBA TV
Buy Tickets View all
- 75968Oklahoma tornadoes: 'It took it all'
- 30909Oklahoma Severe Storm Updates
- 28067Oklahoma weather: Crews work to clear storm damage in Oklahoma City as the state braces for severe weather Sunday.
- 24729Oklahoma State football: Limiting Wes Lunt's transfer options makes Mike Gundy look bad
- 6906Bounty hunters look for bail jumpers, fugitives on the streets of Oklahoma City
- 6904Oklahoma City Thunder: What could Serge Ibaka learn from Hakeem Olajuwon?
- 6686Oklahoma tornadoes: Several homes damaged by tornado, but no injuries in Edmond