Grizzlies Hold Off Jazz To Take Game 1 Of NBA Playoffs

May 23, 2021, 10:18 PM
Mike Conley - Utah Jazz vs. Memphis Grizzlies - Game 1...
Tyus Jones #21 of the Memphis Grizzlies drives against Mike Conley #10 of the Utah Jazz in Game One of the Western Conference first-round playoff series at Vivint Smart Home Arena on May 23, 2021 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)
(Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Memphis Grizzlies were able to hold on to beat the Utah Jazz in Game 1 of the NBA Playoffs, 112-109 on Sunday at Vivint Arena.

Bojan Bogdanovic scored all 29 of his points in the second half to lead the Jazz in their loss to the Grizzlies in Game 1. Mike Conley added 22 points and 11 assists. Rudy Gobert recorded a double-double with 11 points and 15 rebounds before fouling out of the game with 4:23 left.

Dillon Brooks led the Grizzlies with 31 points in his playoff debut. Ja Morant also played in his first playoff game and dropped 26 points, while Jonas Valanciunas chipped in 15 points and 13 rebounds.

Jazz, Grizzlies Each Have One Big Run In First Half

It was a close contest through most of the first quarter before the Jazz ended the opening period on a 10-0 run and had a 24-17 lead. Mike Conley scored nine points to lead the way in the first 12 minutes of play.

That run reached 15-0 as Utah hit a three-pointer and a bucket early in the second quarter. Memphis answered with a 17-2 run of their own that gave them a 39-38 lead with just over two minutes until halftime.

Dillon Brooks scored 10 points in the second quarter as the Grizzlies outscored the Jazz 32-19 and held a 49-43 advantage at the halftime break. Brooks finished the first half with 15 points. Ja Morant added 10 points and Kyle Anderson chipped in 11 points. Mike Conley dropped 16 points to lead the Jazz.

Both teams struggled shooting from beyond the arc. The Jazz made 19 percent (4-21) and Memphis hit 30 percent (4-13) from distance. Overall, Utah hit 34 percent from the floor in the first 24 minutes and the Grizzlies connected on 38 percent of their field goal attempts.

The Jazz were hampered in the first half by committing 10 turnovers but Memphis didn’t capitalize off of the miscues by scoring just four points.

Jazz Stay Cold Offensively In Second Half Against Memphis

Utah stayed close to the Grizzlies in the third quarter but couldn’t get much stops on the defensive end. Memphis shot 53 percent from the field despite the Jazz shooting 50 percent from the field. The problem for the Jazz in the third was the problem in the first half, three point shooting. In the third quarter, the Jazz made just three of their 12 attempts from downtown.

Dillon Brooks kept his hot shooting going in the third, piling up 14 points. Bojan Bogdanovic and Derrick Favors each had nine. Memphis outscored Utah 34-31 in the third quarter and took an 83-74 lead in to the fourth after a buzzer-beating three by Grizzlies rookie Desmond Bane.

In the fourth quarter, Memphis had a 17-point lead before the Jazz started making a run. They would score around six points but the Grizzlies would get a bucket to quiet the crowd.

Bogdanovic hit two free throws to cut the lead to one with 6.4 seconds left after storming back into the game with big shots by Bogey. On the inbounds pass by Memphis, Brooks found himself wide open for a layup. With 4 seconds left, Bogdanovic had a shot to tie it down by three but Kyle Anderson had a great contest on the shot.

The Grizzlies lead the series 1-0. Game 2 of the first round series between the Utah Jazz and the Memphis Grizzlies will be on Wednesday, May 26 at 8 p.m. MDT on TNT and AT&T SportsNet.

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