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Grizzlies Morant, Bane made NBA history with shootout vs. Durant, Irving


Desmond Bane had never been in a game like Monday night. Because it seems, nobody has in NBA history.

There have been 20 players who played between the Memphis Grizzlies and Brooklyn Nets, but 150 points were almost evenly scored between 4.

Bane (38 points) and Ja Morant (38) combined for 76 points, while Kyrie Irving (37) and Kevin Durant (37) scored 74. The Grizzlies duo outlasted the Nets in a 134-124 win at FedExForum. It was the primary time in NBA history a non-overtime game ended with 4 players having exceeded 35 points.

“It felt like a shootout,” Bane said.

Was it a press release game?

Bane and Morant don’t often come up within the discussion of the NBA’s best duos, definitely not as much Durant and Irving, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown in Boston, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George in Los Angeles, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jrue Holiday in Milwaukee, or James Harden and Joel Embiid in Philadelphia.

Morant just made his first All-Star game last season and Bane hasn’t yet, so it could still be too soon. However the young Grizzlies backcourt is making its way. Durant even called Morant “the face of the league going forward” after the sport.

“I feel that we have proven that,” Bane said of competing against top NBA tandems. “We’ll proceed to prove that. It isn’t a one-night thing. It is a season thing. It is a profession thing.”

Morant scored 15 points in the primary quarter and 24 points in the primary half. Bane had yet to hitch the party, but he exploded with a 19-point third quarter that resulted in a 17-point Grizzlies’ swing. He then added 13 within the fourth to place the sport away.

Bane knocked down 8 of 11 3-pointers, snapping out of a 8-for-28 3-point shooting slump in the course of the first three games of the season. Grizzlies coach Taylor Jenkins knew he needed to get Bane going, so he called the primary play of the second half for his shooting guard. Jenkins was asked after the sport if he was starting to fret about Bane’s slow shooting start.

“Never a doubt,” Jenkins said.

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Morant’s 3-point barrage has been certainly one of the team’s biggest early-season developments. He made 4 of 6 from beyond the arc Monday. He’s now shooting 12 of 20 (60%) through 4 games.

“I feel like this summer and fall not the explanations that I’m shooting how I’m shooting straight away,” Morant said. “It’s each day since I have been playing basketball, continuously putting within the work to turn into more consistent with shooting the ball.”

The shooting and scoring dominated the night, but Morant and Bane each dished out seven assists, too. Each players have recorded six or more assists in three of the 4 games.

Jenkins mentioned Bane’s development as a playmaker has improved the offense. The Grizzlies sent Bane to Summer League after his rookie season to give attention to that aspect of his game. He was put in uncomfortable situations and made numerous mistakes.

Bane showed glimpses of his improved playmaking last season, and now it’s happening more consistently.

“(Bane) having the ability to exit and do each, rating the ball from all three levels and likewise get teammates involved, is an enormous key to our success this yr,” Morant said, “having one other guy on the market on the ground who could create for everyone.”

The Grizzlies needed that total package to survive defending Durant and Irving, a task Morant described as, “you only got to hope they miss.”

Durant began the sport 14 of 17 before missing his final three shots. Memphis held him to 2 points within the fourth quarter. That is when Irving scored 21.

However the NBA record books will perpetually show they couldn’t outscore the Grizzlies’ backcourt

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