Michael Wallace: Fizdale confirmed Zach Randolph and James Ennis will start tonight. Fizdale said he needed to simply give him as many minutes as possible.
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Peter Edmiston: Fizdale confirms that ZBo and Ennis will start. “I can’t get ZBo the minutes he needs unless he starts.”
Tim MacMahon: Grizzlies coach David Fizdale on Zach Randolph’s transition to sixth man this season: “It has been seamless. He has never bickered once to the press – not one time. You can go back through every paper, article or anything and he never complained. There were days when he was frustrated. He just stayed with it, and he’s embraced it. He’s got to be in the conversation of Sixth Man of the Year. I don’t know how he can’t be one of the finalists for that, looking at what he’s done on the glass and from a scoring stand point. I think a lot of the sixth men do a lot of scoring. Z-Bo is in the trenches for us, grabbing rebounds for us every night. I’m sure he leads the league for double-doubles off the bench. Yes, I am pitching for him, if you’re wondering.”
Tim MacMahon: Zach Randolph hopes the Grizzlies will go with the duo of Marc Gasol and him more often. “I think teams are happy with the way we’re playing, taking pressure off of them honestly,” Randolph told ESPN. “Some guys told me on that other teams: ‘Shoot, we’re happy y’all guys aren’t playing together anymore. It gives us a break.’ … It’s already been proven. We’ve done proved enough and showed it. I think that’s not the question. It’s just coach wanting to play different and do a different style.”
Tim MacMahon: Coach David Fizdale, who stuck with the duo down the stretch and in overtime of Memphis’ comeback win Friday over the Warriors, points to perimeter defense as the primary concern with the old-school lineup. Memphis is plus-25 in 278 minutes with Gasol and Randolph as a pairing. “I’ll make a deal with them,” Fizdale said. “I will say, ‘Hey, if you guys show me you can defend the 3-point line when you are out there together, then I will play you together more.”
Sirius XM NBA: David Fizdale says playing Marc Gasol & Zach Randolph together would be a “recipe for disaster” #Grizzlies
Pete Pranica: Zach Randolph off bench adds a bench scoring option and opens floor, which David Fizdale has listed as a priority. Don’t forget, Fizdale has more currency with Z-Bo since they worked together at the Grgurich camp when Zach was just 19… I’ve talked with Zach about Fizz and Z-Bo is more enthusiastic about having him as coach than anyone else since he’s been in Memphis.
Ronald Tillery: re: Zach Randolph’s move to second unit. Coach David Fizdale says JaMychal Green is the starting PF for now
Michael Wallace: David Fizdale announces Zach Randolph will come off bench this season full-time. “Let’s not beat around the bush. He can be 6th man of the year.”
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April 25, 2017 | 8:11 am EDT Update
Lakers president Magic Johnson jokingly made his desire to have George in a purple and gold uniform known publicly during an interview last week with late-night talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel, laughing and winking about how he was well-versed on tampering and couldn’t recruit a player under contract with another team. And one of the league’s worst-kept secrets is that the Lakers have a strong appeal for George given their proximity to his hometown of Palmdale, Calif., and his affinity for Kobe Bryant, even though George actually grew up a fan of the Clippers.
Steve Kyler: There’s this perception (Blake Griffin) would want to go back to Oklahoma City, but I’ve talked to people around that and they find that so laughable. Like, “Look, it’s where he’s from, but he doesn’t want to play there.” It’s nothing against the city, it’s Blake has found an interesting and fulfilling life living in L.A.
Not so much Monday, when he took on a bigger role with Dennis Schroder’s three first-quarter fouls changing the tone. The Hawks went from down 27-18 to ahead 59-50 at halftime behind the spark provided by Calderon (10 points, five assists) and Kent Bazemore (16 points, seven assists) in a 111-101 victory in Game 4 to tie the series at 2. “I always think I’m going to be on the podium,” Calderon said after playing 20 minutes and making 4 of 9 shots, inlcuding two three-pointers.
Perhaps none of this should be surprising. Bryant is an avid Harry Potter and Star Wars fan. He shared with Jimmy Fallon that he frequently watches Disney’s “Stuck in the Middle” with his family. And he sang songs from “Moano” and “Beauty and the Beast” on Fallon’s show. That persona may not exactly match his Bryant’s on-court demeanor. But just like in his playing days, Bryant still remains devoted toward attention to detail and being theatrical.
April 25, 2017 | 6:19 am EDT Update
After the Portland Trail Blazers were swept by the Golden State Warriors on Monday, point guard Damian Lillard told ESPN he’s developed a newfound obsession with trying to take down the Warriors. “You have to be obsessed with that because you know that they’re so good that they’re going to be there,” Lillard said after a 128-103 loss in Game 4. “That’s who you’re going to have to get through to get to where you want to get to. That’s what it is.”
“They’re a championship team,” Lillard said. “Watching them and playing against them, it’s obvious. They’re very consistent, whether they’re up or down, they just continue to play. They continue to be who they are. They play loose. They play together. They have a great understanding of how to play the game. That’s hard to play against when you add that with the talent that they have.
The two-time All-Star is proud of the team’s push down the stretch of the regular season, but he’s not satisfied. “I wouldn’t say it was a successful year,” Lillard told ESPN. “We got tested and I think we answered the bell. I felt like we showed our true colors by the way we fought. But I wouldn’t say successful. I think it was growth. A year of growth for us.”