Led by Mike Conley’s 31 points, the Memphis Grizzlies defeated the New York Knicks, 101-88 at FedExForum on Friday night. With the win, Memphis clinched the seventh seed in the Western Conference and will face the San Antonio Spurs in the first round of the Playoffs.
The Grizzlies held the Knicks one point shy of their season-low of 87 points and outshot the Knicks from three-point range, connecting on 15-of-27 (.556) three-pointers while New York only shot 6-of-28 (.214) from the perimeter.
All five Grizzlies starters scored in double figures. Conley led all scorers with 31 points (12-17 FG, 7-11 3P) and six assists in 34 minutes and tied a career-high seven three-point field goals made. Ten of his 15 career 30-point games have been recorded this season alone. Conley is one of four players (LeBron James, Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook) with at least 10,000 points, 4,000 assists and 1,000 steals since he entered the league in 2007-08.
Vince Carter posted nine of his 12 points in the fourth quarter while JaMychal Green and Tony Allen both scored 10 points each. Marc Gasol recorded his 10th double-double of the season with 16 points and 10 rebounds.
Wayne Selden Jr. recorded a career-high 13 points (5-7 FG, 3-4 FT) in 32 minutes off the bench.
After the Knicks outscored the Grizzlies 25-17 in the third period, Memphis entered the fourth quarter trailing New York 72-70. However, the Grizzlies went on an offensive surge and outscored the Knicks 26-8 over the first 8:53 of the quarter to bring the score to 96-80. Memphis would lead the rest of the way.
Courtney Lee led the Knicks with 16 points and three assists. Willy Hernangomez recorded a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds while Maurice Ndour posted a career-high 15 points on 7-of-9 shooting.
The Grizzlies will take on the Detroit Pistons this Sunday at 5 p.m. CT. Come out to FedExForum to cheer on the Grizzlies live, watch on FOX Sports Southeast, presented by Pinnacle Financial Partners, or listen on 92.9 FM ESPN.
Key Stat of the Night
- The Grizzlies shot 15-of-27 (.556) from the three-point line while the Knicks shot just 6-of-28 (.214). Their 15 three-pointers are tied for third most in a game in franchise history.
Key Run of the Night
- The Grizzlies outscored the Knicks 26-8 over the first 8:53 of the fourth quarter. Memphis entered the period trailing 72-70.
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On Mike Conley…
I just want him to keep building that bravado and that confidence to go out and perform at a high level and not be afraid to fail or let anyone down and just turn loose. He’s really embraced it.
On what Wayne Selden Jr. has proven since his comeback…
He can play. I wasn’t giving out charity minutes tonight. He was ballin’. The kid is built for the league. He’s got a great two guard’s body. He reminds me a lot of Dwyane Wade from a body standpoint, big shoulders. And he knows how to play. He’s got an IQ about him. We’re just going to work hard to develop him and see where it takes us, but I really like what I’m seeing so far.
On if any adjustments will be made heading to the playoffs…
I’m just going to try to keep us in a good rhythm. There’s nothing to experiment with. We know who we are. I did a lot of tinkering about a month ago with the lineups and looking at different stuff, but now we know who we are and what to do. Now it’s just fine tuning everything and trying to keep certain guys in rhythm.
On the Grizzlies’ performance heading into the playoffs…
I believe that right now is kind of the time to sharpen up. We’re putting our mindset on just that, whether it’s defensive coverages coming out of timeouts, executing. We’re going to need to keep that kind of focus heading into the playoffs. That’s headed in the right direction going into the playoffs.
On preparing to play the Spurs in the playoffs…
Just compete. Paying attention to detail. We know they utilize the shot clock to the best of their ability. One slip-up could hurt you. All of our guys have to be dialed in for 48 minutes. It’s going to be a tough matchup. We’re going to use these next two games to practice and prep ourselves for those guys.
On the game
It was one of those games where we got off to a slow start. The other team played hard. We found a way to win. Mike [Conley] had a great game, Marc [Gasol], J-Mych [JaMychal Green], Wayne Selden. It was a team win. We just have to come and be prepared for the next game, and finish up strong.
On preparing to play the Spurs in the playoffs
Just have to go out in confidence. We’ve had a lot of battles over the years. We just have to be ready. We know each other very well. It’s going to be a tough series.
- Mike Conley (31 points, 12-17 FG, 7-11 3P) reached 10,000 career points and 4,000 career assists in the first quarter of tonight’s game. Conley is one of four players with 10,000 points, 4,000 assists and 1,000 steals since he entered the NBA in 2007-08 (LeBron James, Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook).
- Conley scored 14 of his points in the first quarter. Over his last five games, Conley is averaging 10.2 first quarter points and has scored eight-or-more in four of those games.
- Conley also tied a career-high with seven three-pointers made. All five of his career games with seven made three-pointers have happened this season.
- Ten of Conley’s 15 30-point games have occurred this season.
- Marc Gasol (16 points, 10 rebounds) recorded his 10th double-double of the season.
- Wayne Selden set a career highs in points (13) and field goals made (5).
- Maurice Ndour scored a career-high 15 points on 7-of-9 shooting (prev. 13, April 4, 2017 vs. Chicago).
- Former Grizzlies guard Courtney Lee led the Knicks with 16 points (7-13 FG). Lee spent parts of three seasons in Memphis, averaging 10.3 points and 2.5 rebounds over 177 games (158 starts).