Oklahoma City’s bench has been outscored 67-23 by Memphis’ reserves over the last two games — both Grizzlies wins. One of the Thunder’s key reserves, Reggie Jackson, has scored just six points over the last two games and has gone 3-for-19 from the field in the series. Oklahoma City coach Scott Brooks said he hasn’t lost confidence in Jackson or the rest of his bench, but he knows he needs more from them. “They’ve been good all year. They’re going to get great opportunities tonight. It’s not because they’re not trying. It’s not because they don’t care,” Brooks said. “They’ve got to make some shots they normally make. Reggie’s one of the best finishers in the game, and that includes all players. We have to get him more opportunities, and that’s on me, to find him more opportunities. But he’s going to get opportunities tonight to attack and create, not only for himself but for his teammates.”
Memphis reserve point guard Beno Udrih has been particularly effective in place of Grizzlies backup point guard Nick Calathes, who’s serving a 20-game suspension for a violation of the NBA’s drug policy. Udrih has scored 26 points on 11-for-14 shooting in 28 minutes over the last two games. He played a total of 55 minutes in 10 games for Memphis during the regular season.
- Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook combined for 60 points in the Grizzlies’ 98-95 overtime victory in Game 3, but they did so on combined 19-for-53 shooting (35.8 percent). Over the last two games, they’ve gone a combined 42-for-109 (38.5 percent) from the field. The Thunder shot 39.1 percent in Game 3, the second straight game the Grizzlies have held them under 40 percent. Oklahoma City was held under 40 percent just nine times in the regular season. “Like anything, you have to step up with confidence, and our guys are confident. You go through stretches of every season, every game that you don’t shoot the ball well,” Brooks said. “You still gotta give yourself a chance to win by playing hard and playing together and for each other, and we’ve done that. We’ve been under 40-percent shooting and had two overtime basketball games, and that’s what we’ve talked about.”
- NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, making his first appearance in Memphis since replacing David Stern, discussed the league’s investigation into Los Angeles Clippers owner David Sterling‘s alleged racial remarks in a recording obtained by TMZ.com during an 8:30 p.m. (ET) press conference. Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger said he wants to hear the recording. “I’ve not heard [the comments]. I’ve heard the tape is nine minutes long. I want to hear it. I’m interested in it,” Joerger said. “My focus right now is on tonight. We have a great game and we have a great league, and I look forward to looking at [the recording].”
– Jason Smith