NBA - Memphis Grizzlies v Oklahoma City Thunder

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2023-24 NBA Regular Season
Memphis Grizzlies v Oklahoma City Thunder

Memphis, Tennessee
Sunday 17 March 2024
Tip-off at 02:00 CAT

The Oklahoma City Thunder will continue their battle for top spot in the NBA Western Conference when they take on the Memphis Grizzlies at the FedExForum on the morning of Sunday, March 17.

The Thunder are locked in a fierce tussle with Denver Nuggets and Minnesota Timberwolves to see who will come away as top seeds for the playoffs from the West.

Mark Daigneault's team will go head to head with the Grizzlies for the second time in the space of just six days, having routed them 124-93 on March 11.

It was their third win on the spin and kept the Northwest Division franchise a half-game ahead of the Nuggets at the summit with a record of 45-19.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander led the scoring for the Thunder with 23 points against Memphis, all of which came in the first three quarters.

Oklahoma City never looked back after opening up a 22-8 lead in the first quarter and Daigneault insisted it was crucial for them to make a strong start.

"I mean, you see games every night in the NBA where a team's banged up or a team with a lesser record knocks off a team with a better record," Daigneault said.

"And so I never take for granted when we give that kind of energy output. And it was from the jump."

The Grizzlies have little hope of qualifying for the play-in tournament as they are 12.5 games behind the Golden State Warriors (10th) with a record of 22-43.

Taylor Jenkins' team won back-to-back games on the road against Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76ers earlier this month, but they've lost seven of their last 10 outings.

Rookie GG Jackson II scored a season-high 30 points against the Thunder in what was the 38th different starting line-up for the Southwest Division franchise this season.

"Yeah, it's a challenge," Jenkins said. "You've got to accept it. You've got to accept the reality. I mean, every game's a different starting line-up, different depth, who's in and who's out.

"It's a challenge, but these guys go and they compete hard. Trying to find chemistry is definitely a challenge. But we're putting the work in. Tonight just wasn't our game."

Memphis Grizzlies v Oklahoma City Thunder - Head-to-head, Regular Season

Games played: 104
Grizzlies wins: 35
Thunder wins: 69

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Published: 03/15/2024