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Quick Recap: Ja Morant drops 39-point triple double in win over Lakers

Ja Morant strings together a 28-point 3rd quarter in the Memphis Grizzlies’ win over the Los Angeles Lakers, 121-109.
By Shawn Coleman - March 1, 2023, 12:01 am - 1 comments

The Memphis Grizzlies welcomed the LA Lakers to the FedExForum on Tuesday Night. Though LeBron James would not be available due a a foot injury he suffered over the weekend, the Lakers came to Memphis plenty prepared to make life tough on Ja Morant and the Grizzlies. The focus for Memphis was building off of Saturday’s big win and getting another good stretch of wins going into March.

The first quarter was slow to develop with both teams struggling to find their rhythm. Both teams played very good defense, but the Grizzlies could not get shots to fall from deep. The Lakers were finding a bit of success for three, but both teams went back and forth for most of the quarter. Finally, the Grizzlies bench offered a bit of spark, as Tyus Jones provided five quick points and Luke Kennard hit a three at the buzzer to put the Grizzlies up 26-22.

The Grizzlies got going in the start of the second quarter, as Desmond Bane starting to find his groove with several baskets to give the Grizzlies the lead. However, the Lakers were well prepared to find their own success, as Lonnie Walker IV and Austin Reaves lead a huge surge from the Lakers bench for much of the quarter. Memphis struggled for much of the quarter, as despite having a huge advantage in shot attempts, the Lakers kept pace simply by making more threes and free throws. The score at halftime was the Lakers up by 3, 49-46.

Reaves lead all scorers with 15 points, while Bane and Morant lead the scoring efforts for Memphis. Both Dillon Brooks and Jaren Jackson Jr. experienced plenty of struggles, and Memphis needed a huge second half from each of them to regain the lead in the third quarter.

At first that did not occur, as the Lakers stretched the lead to six as Anthony Davis heated up. However, Jaren Jackson Jr. started to find his looks inside and the Grizzlies were able to bounce back and take the lead. Jackson Jr. and Morant continued to go basket for basket with Anthony Davis, and the Grizzlies led 71-69 at the halfway point of the third quarter.

Morant continued to find plenty of success, but Davis and the Lakers continued to match him basket for basket. However, Morant continued to heat up and took over around the four minute mark in the quarter, extending the Grizzlies lead to 4 with his 19th point of quarter. Then, Morant went bonkers, as he scored nine points over the final three minutes of the quarter. The end result was Morant setting a new franchise-record with 28 points in the quarter, and the Grizzlies scoring 47 points in a quarter for the second time this season. Most importantly, Memphis entered the fourth quarter with a nine point lead.

The Lakers attempted to make a quick comeback at the start of the fourth quarter, but Memphis was able to weather the storm thanks to Desmond Bane and Brandon Clarke. Three minutes into the quarter, the Grizzlies extended the lead to 12 points. As the quarter progressed, it was Jaren Jackson Jr.’s time to shine. A huge jam and then a big block, both involving Anthony Davis, and the Grizzlies were able maintain their lead and seize momentum.

The Lakers continued to apply pressure to the Grizzlies, as they cut the lead to four points with under 5 minutes left in the game. However, Tillman and Morant were able to score two easy buckets and extend the lead back to eight points. The Grizzlies continued to find success near the rim, as Jackson Jr. and Morant both contributed jams to stretch the lead back to 12 points. Along with the success on offense, Bane made some big plays on defense to keep the Grizzlies lead in double digits.

Morant would continue to shine, and with under a minute left, secured his 39th point and 10th career triple-double. The Grizzlies secured the victory in the process, 121-109, for their second straight win. Tillman produced 18 points and 11 rebounds, while Jaren Jackson Jr. had 16 points, 7 boards, and 4 blocks. Another excellent effort from the Grizzlies in the third quarter with a strong showing in the final frame secured a second straight victory.

Memphis will be back in action tomorrow night against the Rockets.


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  1. Thanks Shawn. Enjoyed the game. I’m still very impressed with how Bane’s game has developed this season, particularly with his self-creation and driving to the hoop. I think it takes some of the pressure off DB in that sense. I’m concerned with the continuing lack of 3PA though and it puzzles me.