The Cavs(32-22) ended their three-game homestand against the Memphis Grizzlies on Thursday night, and this nationally televised game was very physical. Cleveland defeated the Grizzlies 128-113 at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.
Memphis(32-20) has now lost seven of their last eight games.
In this game, Donovan Mitchell and Dillon Brooks were both ejected after an altercation in the third quarter. We’ll talk about that a little later.
Here’s the Great, Not So Great, and the Bottom Line of the Cavs’ win over the Grizzlies.
Darius Garland did not get the call as an All-Star reserve and let the league know about it on the court. Garland had a game-high 32 points and 11 assists.
Jarrett Allen does what Jarrett Allen has done all season, and that’s getting a double-double. He had 18 points, 11 rebounds, four assists, and two blocks.
Evan Mobley was the third Cavs player with a double-double, as he had 17 points, 11 rebounds, five assists, and two blocks. This was the second time this season Cleveland had three players record double-doubles in the same game.
Post Mitchell-Brooks fight: Mitchell and Brooks(Flagrant 2 foul) were ejected with 5:48 left in the third quarter. The altercation started when Brooks drove to the basket and fell to the ground. Mitchell got control of the ball and Brooks hit Mitchell in the groin while on the ground. Mitchell threw the ball at Brooks and pushed him. The two were separated, and eventually, order was restored.
At that point, Cleveland led 81-76. After the Mitchell and Brooks scrap, Cleveland seemed inspired and outscored the Grizzlies 47-37 the rest of the way.
Donovan Mitchell: He stood up for himself and wasn’t going to back down from Brooks; for that, he makes the list. The team also gave him the “Junkyard Dog” award, so they loved what he did.
Not So Great:
Donovan Mitchell: Before the ejection, Mitchell was off; he finished the game 2/11 from the field and scored only six points in 22 minutes of action.
This game was physical and fun, and the Cavs went toe-to-toe with the Grizzlies and didn’t back down; it was good to see the Cavs inspired after the scrap between Brooks and Mitchell.
Furthermore, Brooks started the fight by hitting Mitchell in the groin, and Mitchell just defended himself. In the end, the incident inspired the Cavs, and they got the win.
J.B Bickerstaff/Cavs Head Coach: “We don’t have those guys that start s***, but we have guys who don’t run from s***, and you have to in this league.”
Mitchell on Brooks: “That’s just who he is. We’ve seen it a bunch in this league with him. Him and I have had our personal battles for years. Quite frankly, I’ve been busting his a** for years. Playoffs, regular season. The one game he does an alright job on me today, he does something like that. There’s no place for that in the game, and you’ve got to protect yourself at the end of the day.”
Cleveland travels to Indiana to battle the Pacers on Sunday.
Best of the Rest:
-Cedi Osman had 21 points off the bench and was 4/5 from downtown for the Cavs; Ricky Rubio had a season-high 13 points. Issac Okoro chipped in with 12 points. Cleveland had six players in double figures.
-Desmond Bane led the Grizzlies with 25 points; Ja Morant added 24 points, eight rebounds, and eight assists, and Santi Aldama had a double-double with 21 points and 10 rebounds.