Clippers Vs. Grizzlies 5-03-13 Playoff Thread Gm. 6

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clipper*joe
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NBA playoffs: Los Angeles Clippers vs. Memphis Grizzlies preview

By TERESA M. WALKER Posted May 02 2013 5:15PM

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) The Grizzlies have played the Los Angeles Clippers enough the past year to know that nothing is over until the final buzzer.

Sure, Blake Griffin is questionable with a sprained ankle and Chris Paul has a left thumb bruised. But the resilient Clippers are deep and talented.

That is why the Grizzlies are focusing only on themselves and their defense, the inside games of Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol, along with the work ethic they call grit and grind. They are 3-0 in Game 6s, and they lead the Clippers 3-2 going into Friday night's contest in this first-round, best-of-seven series.

But Memphis has lost both Game 7s the franchise has played in the past two playoffs - at Oklahoma City in 2011 and on the Grizzlies' own court a year ago to these same Clippers.

"We've had to deal with just growing pains I think in the playoffs, and hopefully all those experiences will help us come tomorrow and we'll be able to get it done," Grizzlies guard Mike Conley said Thursday.

The Grizzlies are on the verge of rallying from an 0-2 deficit to win a seven-game series, which has been done 15 times with Oklahoma City the last to do it - beating San Antonio in the Western Conference finals last year. In the process, the Grizzlies have won three straight postseason games for the first time and have their first series lead since being up 2-1 on Oklahoma City in 2011.

Memphis coach Lionel Hollins is pitching this as a two-game series that has the potential to be one if his Grizzlies take care of business before a sold-out crowd. He likes how his Grizzlies have prepared and played with discipline since losing the opener in Los Angeles.

"Now we're on the cusp of maybe moving on," Hollins said.

Griffin will likely be a game-time decision Friday night with the sprained right ankle that kept him on the bench in the fourth quarter of Tuesday night's 103-93 win by Memphis in Los Angeles. He has been receiving constant treatment and said Thursday that his ankle feels better before the Clippers caught a flight to Memphis.

Paul had his left hand bandaged after that loss but plans to play. He matched his postseason high with 35 points in that loss but says he has to do a better job getting his teammates involved. If Griffin can't play, Paul said they will have to use a committee approach and may have to go small.

The Clippers do know they can win in Memphis. They took Game 1 in last year's series chewing away a big Memphis' lead, took Game 7 by a score of 82-72 and won both games during the regular season in Memphis to grab home-court advantage for this series as the No. 4 seed between teams with the same records.

"We got to go there, win there," Paul said. "We've shown the ability to do it before. We know it's going to be rowdy in there. We knew that Game 6 was going to be a close-out game for somebody. We just hoped it wouldn't be an opportunity for them, but it is. We just got to make it work."

Paul could use some help getting the Clippers' offense going again.

They averaged 101.2 points a game in the regular season and scored 112 points in taking Game 1. Since then, the Grizzlies have held Los Angeles to 87.7 points over the past four games thanks to Gasol, the 2013 Defensive Player of the Year, in the middle and Tony Allen and Tayshaun Prince and Quincy Pondexter helping stifle the Clippers' shooters.

"They've outworked us I think the last few games, and that's been the most frustrating thing overall," Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro said.

The Grizzlies struggled a year ago hosting Game 7 with a packed FedExForum cranking the emotions up to a new level. Tuning out the noise and playing under control will be a must.

"The adrenaline's going to be pumping I know," Allen said. "I just want guys, me personally just me personally, I want to keep my composure, stay within myself and just take it as a game where we can close out and stay with what we've got intact."

The Grizzlies have enough experience on the roster to help manage both the expectations and the intensity. Prince, a trade pickup Jan. 30, won an NBA title with the Pistons in 2004 and an Olympic gold medal in 2008. Guard Keyon Dooling has played 53 postseason games himself, and Gasol won a silver medal himself last summer in the London Olympics with Spain.

Gasol insists the mindset must remain the same as when the Grizzlies trailed 0-2 in this series.

"We're just a step closer," Gasol said. "When we were down 2-zero, our margin of error was really low. Now we have to have the same mindset of trying to be a little better and polish the stuff we did not do well on previous games and try to do it a little better in Game 6."


Follow Teresa M. Walker at www.twitter.com/teresamwalker

http://www.nba.com/games/20130503/LACMEM/gameinfo.html

lobcityhawaii
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Let's go Clippers! We can win this! Boston and Houston were huge underdogs and no one expected them to win on the road and they did. This is a 4 vs. 5 matchup. We can do this!

JahvonTheClip
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If we win this I believe we can win the series especially at home

cleepers
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Their fans will be going mental and they'll be trying to win it in the first quarter. Hold them off for 12 minutes, then every minute they don't pull away increases the pressure on them and gives our guys confidence.

Let's see how they handle being favorites.

lobcityhawaii
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Good point. We have to weather the early storm, since the crowd will definitely be pumped at the start.

We have to win Friday!!! I'm going to pray for our team and Blake's health!

Amnesty_David_Stern
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We need to come out firing on all cylinders and our shooters have to get hot and stay hot otherwise we are in for major trouble. With Blake injured, DJ a non factor on offense as well as our other big men we will really need CP3, Crawford, Barnes, Butler, Billups to step it up. And if Willie and Bledsoe can knock down some shots then great.

I really think we need to attack the basket with our guards as much as humanly possible. Getting Gasol, Randolph or Davis in foul trouble early on will help tip the scales a little bit back to normal with Blake suffering.

toohipcliptoslip
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We've been our coached and our center sucks the sack. He was a big reason we lost game 3

Clipperfn4lf
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Trying my hardest to remain positive and hopeful. This is going to be like pre Cp3 days cheering for the HUGE underdog!!

CLIPSET
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on the flip side, if they win the first 12 minutes, it's over.

Voyeur
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LET'S DO THIS!!!

gman
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Please hold all negative comments to after the game. This is a time to send positive vibes to our team. its time to cheer unconditionaly. Lets do thissssssssssssss

Battlegun
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This game will show if the Clippers have the mentality to win a championship or not.

If you can't win big games, you won't win the biggest ones.

lobcityhawaii
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Great post! Let's do this!!! I believe in this team! Just as I have all season, through all the downs!

CapsNClips
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Our most important game of the reg season was the game @Memphis and our most important game of the post season is @Memphis. Lets make sure the outcome is the same as last time.

lobcityhawaii
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Agreed. This is obviously more important than the regular season game but, its a good comparison.

ekker3
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CLIPSET wrote:
cleepers wrote:
Their fans will be going mental and they'll be trying to win it in the first quarter. Hold them off for 12 minutes, then every minute they don't pull away increases the pressure on them and gives our guys confidence.

Let's see how they handle being favorites.

on the flip side, if they win the first 12 minutes, it's over.

we won the first quarter in game 5 and i immediately uttered "its over. we got this." then things happened.

besides, ask nick young about games being over.

ive got a pretty good feeling about this one. small ball or bust. spread the floor, increase the pace, make it a scoring battle.

pageC4
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ekker3 wrote:
CLIPSET wrote:
cleepers wrote:
Their fans will be going mental and they'll be trying to win it in the first quarter. Hold them off for 12 minutes, then every minute they don't pull away increases the pressure on them and gives our guys confidence.

Let's see how they handle being favorites.

on the flip side, if they win the first 12 minutes, it's over.

we won the first quarter in game 5 and i immediately uttered "its over. we got this." then things happened.

besides, ask nick young about games being over.

ive got a pretty good feeling about this one. small ball or bust. spread the floor, increase the pace, make it a scoring battle.

I hate the Nick Young example though. Young had a career night that we never saw again in that series or san antonio for that matter. We cant rely on some miracle night from a role player, we have to have consistent performances..thats what keeps you winning.

I would rather a solid 12-13 points from here on out from Caron and Chauncey, a 10 point and 10 rebound performance from DJ and some solid contribution from Crawford.

lobcityhawaii
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I just wish Willie started this series. He's clearly better than Chauncey. He was our starter for most of the season and arguably are most consistent 3 point shooter. This series would be different if he started. I would bet that Willie wont be starting tomorrow.

mj_shoefanatic
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Repped High Quality Post

GO CLIPPS!

sz123456
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Yep. Some people can say how well we played last year in game 1, game 7, and the last regular season matchup this year, but more than anything I felt that the Grizz absolutely choked. Keep it close, they'll cave like they always do.

lobcityhawaii
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Love that picture! Go Clipps!!!

elton_sucks42
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Let's hope cp3 gets some help. If we send this to a game 7 anything can happen.

CP3Best
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That pic was from game 1 when we prevailed! LOVE IT!

ClipperSam
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GSW a 6th seed beats a 3rd seed. Because Jackson is a great coach like I told everyone. I said it in his first season. That is the difference of great young coach getting better. I wouldn't be surprised if they go 7 games with San Antonio.

sz123456
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Karl is much better than Jackson. The Warriors are us last year, and similarly, they'll probably get swept by the Spurs. Great win for their organization though.

Voyeur
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Yeah I'm not sure about a coach who's answer to why so many turnovers in the 4th is "God's" plan or whatever.

lobcityhawaii
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I hate mark Jackson. He's a douche. The same guy that was staring our team down and thinking Denver was dirty. Give me a break.

ClipperSam
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I never thought of George Karl as great coach! I think he is a very good coach but not a great coach. I think he is a great person but not a championship coach! I think mark Jackson is in the top 5. Like I said stats don't always show a coached ability. To me George Karl should be respected. But lacks what it takes to get his team over the top!

1) pop from SA

CP3Heliflopter
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Karl is not a great coach I agree. He has choked way too many times in the playoffs and has underachieved with great teams. He has a lot of experience but has little to show for it. Its more Karl coaching poorly than Jackson coaching great though I think Jackson is a pretty good coach. Not top 5 though.

The key to this game is simple. If our bigs get dominated we lose. If they put up some resistance we have a chance.

lobcityhawaii
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Hope so also! As long as we somehow win tomorrow I'll be happy! Let's go Clippers!!!

FightOnRon
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I have a really nive team picture the Clippers gave to STH. It shows the entire team in the practice facility posing for the picture. Behind them on the wall is a huge sign with the Clipper logo on both sides and the words in between are:

ENERGY * FOCUS * NO EXCUSES

This is what we ask, this is what they need.

fattner
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One word "heart " that's wht it's all about !! Time 4 the clippers to show heart !! Without heart ur done !! This team has heart so step up and show it and bring it home !!!!

Code:

A_DOG_NAMED_BUD
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sz123456 wrote:
cleepers wrote:
Their fans will be going mental and they'll be trying to win it in the first quarter. Hold them off for 12 minutes, then every minute they don't pull away increases the pressure on them and gives our guys confidence.

Let's see how they handle being favorites.

Yep. Some people can say how well we played last year in game 1, game 7, and the last regular season matchup this year, but more than anything I felt that the Grizz absolutely choked. Keep it close, they'll cave like they always do.

Yes, I agree. We just got to keep the game close. It seems like all the games we've lost we've been close for most of the game until somewhere around the end of the 3rd or 4th we let them pull away. Just keep it close and let CP3 work his magic while the Grizzlies crumble under the pressure like always.

Worldbthree
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I just hope the refs don't take the Clips out of the game, it seems like when its close and there is bad call after bad call, the Clips kinda throw up their arms and say screw it. They have to play past this and step up, the fouls have been atrocious, the Clips are way a head now in fouls committed compared to the Griz. Its a really tough thing to over come, when the other team is shooting many more FT's over the series. I don't want to be that fan that blames officiating, but they have changed the series in so many ways, its unwatchable at times. I hope the refs just keep the whistles in their pockets unless its a hard foul. Called evenly, Clips will win, if refs get involved like all the rest of the games Clips will have their hands full.

lobcityhawaii
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CP3: "It's either come out, play hard, play effective or this is the last game of the season...we're not ready for the season to be over"

lobcityhawaii
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Agree.

Regular season fouls per game stats:

Clippers: 20.9 fouls/game

Memphis: 20.2 fouls/game

How many games has the fouls differential and free thrown differential been close? lol.

lobcityhawaii
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Referees for tonight's game:

Joe Crawford

Rodney Mott

Derrick Stafford

Based on the playoff stats, Mott and Stafford are homers. Crawford is not that bad. Great...

lobcityhawaii
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http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/post/_/ ... ht-game-6s

ESPN sportsnation poll. At this moment, 43% of america thinks we are going to win tonight. This is based on 17,000 votes so far. Interesting...

ClipsGForce
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I can't see Grizz win four game straight. Clips must come out fighting with guns blazing. Anybody beside CP3 and Crawford need to step up. Lob City!

lobcityhawaii
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http://espn.go.com/blog/truehoop/post/_ ... to-watch-2

From Kevin Arnovitz, ESPN on how to deal with Blake not playing or ineffective Blake.

How can the Clippers absorb Griffin's absence? On Thursday, Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro said that if Griffin isn't available, veteran multitasker Lamar Odom would start at power forward for the Clippers. Odom's presence on the floor with the starters would give the Clippers yet another versatile ball handler and a crafty -- if occasionally freelancing -- team defender. But a better bet might be to go small and hand the lion's share of the minutes at power forward to Matt Barnes. That would enable them to replicate the successful formula of the bench and open up the game. The Grizzlies like chaos, but their very particular controlled brand of chaos, not the outright disorder a small ball Clippers unit would bring.

This scheme wouldn't be without serious challenges for the Clippers. They'd probably have to send quick double-teams from the top of the floor to help Barnes on Zach Randolph, something they did fairly effectively in spots during last season's epic Game 7. And Chris Paul has always preferred a more controlled approach to half-court offense. But the Clippers will need to move this game from paint to the perimeter, and Barnes at the 4 for significant periods certainly would do that.

FightOnRon
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I have seen Crawford screw us numerous times this year. Look, we know the Clips will get called more. they must know that too. they just need to not give up with every ticky tack foul they draw.

Plus watch for the new MEM trick. Their ball handler will back a CLipper up into the paint but instead of keeping on moving toward the rim they stand there dribbling long enough for us to get a "T" for 3 seconds.

clipper*joe
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gman wrote:
Please hold all negative comments to after the game. This is a time to send positive vibes to our team. its time to cheer unconditionaly. Lets do thissssssssssssss

clipper*joe
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R U nuts? You're delusional! Steph is the reason why they beat the Nuggets. I suppose by saying "god" in every other word in a timeout makes you a good coach? Go fly a kite next a livewire....

Clippersfan86
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Joe it's not hyperbole though. EVERYBODY in the world is praising Mark's brilliant coaching. In fact opponent Andre Miller flat out said George Karl (known as a great coach by all accounts) was outcoached by Jackson today.

Clippersfan86
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Ramona Shelburne: Security guard at the arena told me, "Chris Paul was everywhere this morning. Weight room, court. It was like he was possessed." I ran that account by Chris Paul. He was like, "yeah. Something like that. I couldnt sleep."

I guess CP3's been at the arena almost all day since this morning.

Clipperfn4lf
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Hey memphis guess what? "We don't Bluff" CP3 all day!!

lobcityhawaii
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That's good to hear!

"You hate that it has to get to this point," Paul said. "But it really is do or die for us tonight. It's either come out play hard and and be effective, or it's our last game of the season. And we're not ready for the season to be over."

Hope all the other players are not ready for the season to be over.

lobcityhawaii
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I just prayed for Blake and the team to get a win tonight.

clipper*joe
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Now THAT, is hyperbole.

I'm hearing more about how Curry is the first round MVP than Jackson's brilliance. I saw the TNT crew say they're happy for him but nothing about how brilliant of a coach he is. I heard them say how Curry and Thompson are the greatest backcourt in the world.

ekker3
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we're winning tonight, y'all. BOOK IT.

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