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San Antonio versus Memphis, Final Score: Spurs blow out Grizzlies, 145-115

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LaMarcus Aldridge explodes for 40 points as the Spurs throttle the young Grizzlies.

NBA: San Antonio Spurs at Memphis Grizzlies Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports

San Antonio utterly annihilated the Memphis Grizzlies on Monday night. The Spurs built a 19 point lead in the first quarter, and never looked back, sealing the victory 145-115.

LaMarcus Aldridge led the Spurs with 40 points on 17-of-25 shooting, followed by 26 points from DeMar DeRozan on a nearly perfect night from the field. Jaren Jackson Jr. led the way for Memphis with a team-high 22 points and Ja Morant tallied 19 points for the home team.

Observations

  • The Spurs were the seventh-worst first-quarter scoring team in the NBA coming into the game (26.3 Points), and San Antonio blew their average out of the water with a season-high 46 points in the opening frame. If it felt like every shot they lanched was falling, it’s probably because they only missed five shot attempts in the first 12 minutes of action.
  • Jaren Jackson Jr. dropped 24 points in his last meeting with San Antonio, and the second-year big man followed up with a 22 point performance in this one. With how good he looked against the Silver and Black, I wouldn’t be surprised if his father and former Spur Jaren Jackson instilled some corporate knowledge of the system into the budding star.
  • The San Antonio Spurs 145 points tonight were the third most points scored during the Gregg Popovich era. Their 67.4% field goal accuracy was the best field goal percentage in any game by any team during the legendary coach’s 24-year tenure.
  • LaMarcus Aldridge was hot from the get-go, scoring 22 points on 10-of-13 shooting in the first quarter alone. The seven-time All-Star ended the night with points 40 points, 9 rebounds, and 5 assists while dominating inside and out against a helpless Grizzlies defense.
  • Coach Popovich continued to bring Marco Belinelli off the bench before Lonnie Walker IV. The Italian shooting guard has rediscovered his long-distance shooting touch while Lonnie has taken a backseat, and their rotational battle is one to watch as the season progresses. Walker totaled just 2 points, and Marco scored 10 points of his own.
  • DeMar DeRozan quietly put together one of his best games of the season. The savvy veteran added 26 points, handed out 10 dimes, collected 3 steals, and missed just one shot in 29 minutes. He also brought his road shooting percentage above 60% for the season, an especially impressive mark for any player away from home.
  • Gregg Popovich told Spurs play-by-play man Bill Land he wanted to play Derrick White and Dejounte Murray together more often, and we’ve yet to see that combination in any meaningful way since his comments. San Antonio’s talented young point guards have been staggered to ensure one of them is on the court at all times, but a tag-team of the two could go a long way towards ensuring a sturdier defensive front.
  • After going scoreless in 13 minutes his last time out, Trey Lyles looked like a new man in San Antonio’s victory over the Grizzlies. The first-year Spur shot the ball with confidence, and dropped a season-high 17 points, and nailed three triples.
  • The good guys committed 18 turnovers in an embarrassing blowout to Kawhi and crew on Saturday night but were much tighter with the rock on Monday. San Antonio only had 12 giveaways versus the Grizzlies and dished out 36 assists for a 3:1 assist to turnover ratio.
  • Dejounte Murray may not have scored 40 points or racked up 10 assists, but he made an impact on the game. San Antonio’s floor general stuffed the stat sheet with 14 points, 6 boards, 4 assists, and 2 steals. The Spurs are now 6-4 when Dejounte shoots the ball 10 or more times, and 4-12 when he doesn’t. Tonight was an excellent example of getting the talented young point guard involved without forcing the issue.