Final: Grizzlies 102, Bulls 86
Key Stat of the Night
The Grizzlies starters set a franchise low with just 21 points in the loss at Chicago. They more than made up for that this time around, combining for 86 points, led by Rudy Gay's game-high 24 points.
Speights came out with plenty of emotion and aggression, hitting his first four shots from the floor, two of those being thunderous dunks. It was the catalyst for a 16-point game to go with a career-high 12 rebounds, two assists and a blocked shot. Speights also showed his improved conditioning, playing 34 minutes, one shy of his career high.
Rudy Gay's 24 points led the way to a nationally-televised Grizzlies 102-86 victory during the 10th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration Game presented by Lexus and Delta Air Lines along with Associate Sponsors Sun Trust and McDonald's of the Mid-South. The Grizzlies return home to FedExForum on Saturday to take on the Kings.
On the game:
“I feel pretty good. I know Memphis lost big to them before and when it’s on home court, you feel like that’s disrespect, so we went out there and did what we had to do to win. We just go out there and play hard to win. It’s Memphis basketball, that’s what we do when we’ve got to win.”
On joining the Memphis Grizzlies:
“My teammates have helped me a lot to adjust here, so it’s going pretty good. I’m glad we got the win.”
On the current win streak:
“It’s really good to get three in a row in the NBA, so it’s a good start. We’ve got to finish it off.”
On New Orleans:
“We’ve just got to keep guys from getting easy points and just play hard, like we did tonight. If we play like we did tonight, we can beat anybody.”
On the game:
“I felt good. My ankle is getting better. My injury is starting to go away a little bit. I felt rejuvenated and just tried to make plays for our team. They are a great defensive team and I just tried to penetrate and make plays for guys. To beat a good team like Chicago, you have to have energy. You have to outwork them. That’s what we wanted to do from the beginning of the game – pick up fullcourt, inbounds plays and make a statement that we’re going to be in this game for all four quarters.”
On the Bulls:
“They did a great job of pressuring us fullcourt and trapping the ball. It kind of threw us for a loop there. Then, in the timeout, we made some adjustments and the big guys came back and helped us get the ball back across the court. After that, we got into our sets better and were able to execute down the stretch.”
On the game:
“We are getting better every day but we can’t stop. We’re taking baby steps now. To get to where we want to get, it’s going to take a lot more effort. We wanted to be aggressive and execute defensively and offensively. Then you look at double-sides to a quarter when we didn’t execute as well, they were trying to put us in a rush. They did a good job, then in the fourth quarter we got aggressive.”