Memphis Grizzlies 119, Milwaukee Bucks 106 — With Giannis Antetokounmpo serving a one game suspension for a headbutt and noted Marquette guy Wesley Matthews sitting out with an injury sustained a couple of games back, the Bucks .... uh, I don’t really know how to put this. How about this: The Bucks did their best work to make Memphis look like they absolutely deserved their spot in the Western Conference play-in for the #8 seed.
The Grizzlies led by 10 at one point in the first quarter, and although it took until after halftime to led the lead hit 15, it’s not like the Bucks were putting a whole lot of scare into Memphis. The lead pretty quickly went from 15 out to 23, and while Milwaukee made the final score look a little closer than the second half actually was, there was no doubt who was going to end up getting the win here.
Should we, the tangential Milwaukee Bucks fan thanks to our interest in Matthews winning an NBA title, be worried about the Bucks going just 3-5 in the Bubble Restart games? I have no idea! They clinched the top seed in the East with relative ease and spent most of the last several games of the restart resting various players in rotation. Is relative health good for Milwaukee heading into the playoffs? Would playing coherent basketball be better for them in the long run? No idea!
As mentioned, Matthews sat this one out. Five Bucks hit double digits in this game, led by 19 points from Brook Lopez. Dillon Brooks had 31 to lead Memphis, but you can easily make the argument that Jonas Valanciunas throwing together a 26/19/12 triple double along with a triple double from Ja Morant (12 points, 13 rebounds, 10 assists) had a much bigger impact on the Grizzlies winning this game.
Up Next: Playoff time! As the #1 seed in the East, Milwaukee draws #8 seed Orlando in the first round. The series against the Magic gets started on Tuesday afternoon with a 12:30pm Central time start on TNT.