Held to 19 points in the third quarter and 17 in the fourth, the Portland Trail Blazers squandered a double-digit lead, falling to the Memphis Grizzlies 88-86. They are now 1-2 on their five-game road trip. The Grizzlies, playing without Mike Conley (back) and Chandler Parsons (knee) were largely carried by elite center Marc Gasol, who burned the Trail Blazers for 36 points on 24 shots.
In games where the margin is within 3 points in the final 30 seconds, 7 of the @NBA's top 11 players in +/- rating play for the @memgrizz.— Grizzlies PR (@GrizzliesPR) December 9, 2016
Marc Gasol's 90 points over his last three games are his most over any three-game span in his NBA career. https://t.co/umfWVlZNfF— Grizzlies PR (@GrizzliesPR) December 9, 2016
Dame is also as frustrated post-game taking about the final seconds of the game as I've ever seen him— Casey Holdahl (@CHold) December 9, 2016
There was some minor controversy surrounding the Grizzlies’ last shot attempt, in the form of post-game frustration from point guard Damian Lillard, who fouled Toney Douglas on that possession. The call has since been deemed correct in the L2M (Last two minute) officiating report, found here.
It was a tough loss for a variety of reasons, writes Joe Freeman of The Oregonian:
In the end, no matter your perspective, it was a heartbreaker for the Blazers (12-12), who staggered along on their five-game trip toward Indianapolis with a two-game losing streak, bruised egos and, worst of all, a slew of injury concerns.
Moe Harkless, who sprained his left ankle in the final two minutes of Wednesday night's loss at Milwaukee, did not play against the Grizzlies after testing his injury during his pregame workout. Aminu -- already working himself back from a strained left calf -- crashed hard to FedExForum court with 19.2 seconds remaining, left the game and wore a large wrap around his left hip in the postgame locker room. Roughly 14 seconds before Aminu's fall, Davis tweaked his left ankle when he stepped on an opposing player's foot, left the game and did not return.
The Trail Blazers move on to face the Indiana Pacers (11-11), who also seem to be stuck at .500, on Saturday. The Trail Blazers blew out the Pacers in Portland on November 30, but with a healthy Paul George and homecourt advantage this time around, the ball is literally and figuratively in the Pacers’ court. The man who is typically called upon to contain him, Al-Farouq Aminu, is doubtful to play.