Memphis Grizzlies rivalry Oklahoma City Thunder

Memphis Grizzlies rivalry with Oklahoma City Thunder

Memphis Grizzlies Oklahoma City Thunder rivalry.

The sports flooded with world-class athletic talents, high-flying personalities and ruthless competitors world naturally would feature plenty of personal and team competitions amid the search for greatness. Rivalries have always exhilarated fans and send journalists into frenzies, but never cease to create worldwide disdain. It’s the truth behind fan base passion. Whether two teams are scratching for an extra bit of respect, two nations clawing for supremacy or legends slugging it out for a deeper carving in sports lore, these rivalries create memories and more passion in the sport world with their matches.
Although Sports and rivalries go hand-in-hand, uniting communities and inspiring athletes to do their best, it can turn out negative. Rivalries are often marred by vandalism, insults, threats, and violence.
Memphis Grizzlies have stayed relevant and served their fans with their rivalries with some teams in the NBA. Their rivalry with San Antonio Spurs seems to be the only one that retains some respect in
it. But with Los Angeles Clippers and Oklahoma City Thunder, there seems to be less respect between these teams.

The rivalry between Grizzlies and Thunder dates back to the team’s days in Vancouver when the latter was known as the Seattle Supersonics.
Oklahoma City Thunder started out as Seattle Supersonics (Sonics). They were based in Seattle, Washington and played in the NBA as a member of the league’s Western Conference Pacific and Northwest divisions from 1967 until 2008. At the end of the 2007-08 season, the team relocated to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and now play as the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Grizzlies and Thunder are not just each other’s biggest rivals, but was one of the budding rivals NBA had years back.
In 2011 at the conference semi-finals, the Thunder won a hard-fought series in a winner-take-all Game 7 at home. The highlights of this rivalry came in Game 4 of the series. Oklahoma City managed a triple-overtime thriller that saw them take back home-court advantage behind huge performances from Russell Westbrook and MVP of the series, Kevin Durant (who had 26 points and 9 rebounds). Two years later, the Grizzlies beat Thunder in just five games. Grizzlies lost game one in Oklahoma City but turned things around by winning the next four matches to advance to the Western Conference Finals to face Spurs who later defeated the Grizzlies.
2014 – the rivalry between these two took a historic turn. These two gave one of the best playoff series in recent NBA history – the first series ever that saw four games go into overtime. Serious play from these two. In these four games, the Grizzlies had clearly affected Thunder’s desire to play-up tempo and in the open floor which exposed stretches of predictable offense. The result was back and forth, with low scoring games that rarely saw big leads. In Game 5 of the series, Memphis pulled out a thriller on the road and looked poised out to win the series at “The Grindhouse” in Game 6, but “Mr. Unreliable” Kevin Durant had other plans that night.

Memphis Grizzlies rivals Oklahoma City Thunder

The moment that changed the 2014 playoff series between these two occurred when Zach Randolph got tangled up with Thunder center, Steven Adams. Zach threw a punch to Adams’ face resulting in a league-mandate suspension for Game 7. The Grizzlies held on through a tough series but couldn’t close out the series. The City Thunder cruised to a 120-109 victory and went on to face the Clippers. Kevin Durant finished the night with a game-high 33 points, showing off his smooth shooting stroke to send the Thunder to the Western Conference semi-finals. Russell Westbrook also had a monster game, earning himself a triple-double in Game 7. He finished the night with 27 points, 16 assists and 10 rebounds.
Marc Gasol showed off his wide-array of talents, sinking jumpers from 15 feet out and working his pot moves. He finished the night with a team-high 24 points along with six assists. Mike Conley despite playing with an injury, had a solid game and ended his postseason with 20 points and 9 assists. But their efforts were outmatched by Thunders leading duo. This game left the Memphis fans with plenty questions;
Did Zach really throw a punch?
Could the Grizzlies have stolen a third game on the road if Zach was eligible?
If Zach had played, would he have cancelled out Russell and Durant’s “monster mode”
These conversations and questions lasted all offseason and it actually proved that this rivalry is one of the premier rivalries in the entire league and not just a secret the NBA had to keep.


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