Grizzlies Game 2 defeat by San Antonio Spurs.
Grizzlies head coach David Fizdale has had an incredibly entertaining rant in his postgame press conference following losing a defensive-oriented battle and falling to a 2-0 deficit to the San Antonio Spurs in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs.
San Antonio Spurs won by a fairly wide margin, 96-82, but the first-year head coach went after the officiating.
Coach Fizdale deemed it as unfair, awarding the Spurs and veteran coach Gregg Popovich with a number of generous foul calls. He might have a point, too.
During Game 2 playoff, the Spurs went 31-for-32 from the charity stripe while the Grizzlies went 13-of-15. Kawhi Leonard alone went 19-for-19 and attempted four more free throws than the entire Memphis team.
Full transcript of head coach David Fizdale comments.
‘It’s unfortunate that I’ve got a guy like Mike Conley, who in his whole career’s got zero technical fouls. And just cannot seem to get the proper respect from the officials that he deserves. It was a very poorly officiated basketball game.”
Most experienced NBA coaches would have stopped talking, knowing that a small fine was coming. However, Fizdale continued in an epic (and well-prepared) fashion.
“Zach Randolph, the most rugged guy in the game, had zero free throws, but somehow Kawhi Leonard had 19 free throws. First half we shot 19 shots in the paint and we had six free throws. They shot 11 times in the paint and had 23 free throws. Not a numbers guy, but that doesn’t seem to add up.”
Head coach David Fizdale put on one of the best puzzled looks on his face that you’ll ever see. It’s probably already been “meme’d” by now.
He continued, “Overall, 35 times we shot the ball in the paint, we had 15 free throws for the game. They shot 18 times in the paint and had 32 free throws, Kawhi shot more free throws than our whole team. Explain it to me. We don’t get the respect that these guys deserve, because Mike Conley doesn’t go crazy, he has class, and he just plays the game, but I’m not gonna let them treat us that way.”
Somehow, Conley’s name got thrown in the mix a few times.
“I know Pop’s got pedigree, and I’m a young rookie, but they not gonna rook us! That’s unacceptable, that was unprofessional. Our guys dug in that game and earned the right to be in that game, and they did not even give us a chance. Take that for data!”
As someone who had success at the highest level as an assistant coach in Miami when LeBron James was in town, Fizdale knows a thing or two about playoff hoops. While he will certainly receive a hefty fine from the league office after this diatribe, it remains to be seen whether it lights a spark for his team, who will be hosting their first contest in the series in Game 3 on Thursday.