The Grizzlies caught the Boston Celtics on an off night, and made them pay Wednesday night, in a 111-91 win in Boston. It was their seventh straight road win, after breaking an eight game home losing skid Monday night against the Nets. It’s also the Grizzlies largest margin of victory ever over Boston, and their second highest point total ever in a road game against the Celtics.
This may well be the best effort the Grizzlies have put forward this season. After an early tie at 4-all, the Grizzlies (34-31) pulled away, holding the Celtics (40-23) to 12 first quarter points and establishing a 15 point lead. Boston never got closer than 14 points the rest of the night.
There were lots of hot hands among the Grizzlies, led by Rudy Gay’s 28 points. O. J. Mayo added 17 points on 7-for-8 shooting and added three assists. Marcus Williams came off the bench for 16 points, leading a second straight solid bench scoring night for the Grizz. The bench outscored the Celtics bench 34-33.
Zach Randolph was back after taking Monday off to rest a sore back. Zbo was effective, with 13 points and ten rebounds against a solid Celtics front line.
The Celtics are normally a good defensive team, but the Grizzlies shot 55% overall, and 56.2% (9-for-16) from three-point land.
Hasheem Thabeet, the rookie center freshly restored to the Grizzlies from the D-League, showed improvement after playing six games for the Dakota Wizards: seven points, six rebounds and a blocked shot, though he still has hands of stone (don’t bring him to an egg toss). Expect coach Lionel Hollins to keep giving Thabeet playing time as long as he shows the necessary hustle and focus.
Almost nothing went right for the Celtics: Kevin Garnett was held to six points and seven rebounds, and Ray Allen went 0-for-6 from behind the three-point arc. Rajon Rondo did score 17 and hand out eight assists, though perhaps half a dozen more assists failed to materialize due to missed open shots.
The Grizzlies have a home back-to-back this weekend: the New York Knicks Friday night, and a tough Denver Nuggets squad Saturday night.