The Memphis Grizzlies had the misfortune of the drawing the San Antonio Spurs in the first round last year, too. The 2016 Spurs swept the Grizz in four games while putting their signature defensive stamp on the series in Game 2, beating the Grizzlies 94-68. The drubbing prompted then-Grizzlies forward Matt Barnes to say Memphis had “come to a gunfight with spoons.”
The Grizzlies brought their spoons to San Antonio again to start the 2017 playoffs. Game 1 went decisively to San Antonio 111-82. Barnes is a Golden State Warrior now — his new team doesn’t know what spoons are, apparently. But the Spurs surely packed their figurative guns again to fight in this series, recording 11 blocked shots in Game 1 and holding Memphis to just 33 points in the second half. Grizzlies coach David Fizdale was heard imploring his team to compete in Game 1. “I never care what the score is,” Fizdale said, “you have to compete. Compete!” The Grizzlies will look to bring more than spoons to Game 2.