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Thunder-Grizzlies Report Card: How the Thunder's bench wore down Memphis

REPORT CARD — Grading Oklahoma City’s 100-86 victory over Memphis in Game 1 of a Western Conference quarterfinal.
by Berry Tramel Published: April 18, 2014

SECOND HALF START: F. The Grizzlies made 12 baskets on 48 shots in the first half. They had 31 points until James Johnson’s desperation 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer. Then Memphis scored 31 points in the third quarter alone. The Grizzlies scored on eight of their first nine possessions and 15 of 21 in the quarter. And the Thunder’s offense was no better than its defense. OKC scored just 13 third-quarter points, including only four in the first 5 1/2 minutes after halftime.

FAN INGENUITY: A. The T-shirt fad is back on, with blue shirts awaiting on every seat Saturday night. Most fans take part, but sometimes, even an extra-large shirt can be a little uncomfortable, depending on what you’re wearing and how big you are. The Thunder has some bigger sizes available for swap at its customer relations desk, but one female fan took matter into her own hands. She brought a pair of scissors and cut out the sleeves to make a shirt a little looser.

RUSSELL WESTBROOK: C. Russell Westbrook was great early, dominating counterpart Mike Conley. At halftime, Westbrook had 16 points on 6-of-10 shooting, eight rebounds and three assists. But Westbrook was shaky in the third quarter. He missed all five of his shots, some of them ill-timed, and committed two turnovers. The offense never got in synch. The Thunder settled the game in the fourth quarter with Westbrook on the bench, though he returned with 6:37 left and OKC up 83-73.

by Berry Tramel
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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