The Memphis Grizzlies had their backs against the wall on Wednesday night, but found a way to force a Game 6 after a convincing 116-99 win over the Los Angeles Lakers — and that was no thanks to Dillon Brooks.
Brooks scored a measly eight points and added two rebounds over 29 minutes on the court as his major shooting slump continues. But he has a seemingly easy solution headed into a pivotal Game 6 at Crypto.com Arena, according to ESPN’s Tim MacMahon.
“Just shoot,” Brooks told MacMahon. “Next question.”
Saying Brooks is in a shooting slump is putting it lightly; he’s hit 30.3 percent of his field goals and 21.6 percent of his threes in the NBA Playoffs so far.
Whether that has anything to do with the widespread criticism he received for his head-scratching comments about LeBron James earlier in the series is anyone’s guess, but it’s safe to say the Grizzlies won Game 5 without him.
Desmond Bane had 33 points and 10 rebounds, two-time All-Star Ja Morant added 31 points and 10 boards, and Defensive Player of the Year Jaren Jackson Jr. scored 18 points and 10 rebounds to help the Grizzlies stave off elimination against the Lakers.
“I said it out there, and I’ll say it again,” Bane said afterwards. “We are going to be back for a Game 7 in front of the best fans in the NBA.”
Memphis will have to prove they can win a game in Los Angeles if they’re going to make Bane’s statement true, after losing both in California so far. If they can win Game 6 on the road, it’ll force a third Game 7 in franchise history and the first since 2014.
Although the Memphis Grizzlies proved they can without without Dillon Brooks contributing, they could really use their starting small forward to show up on Friday night.
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