Game 2: Desmond Bane in doubt, could be out for Grizzlies vs. Warriors
May 3, 2022
Due to lower back soreness, Desmond Bane of the Memphis Grizzlies has been designated as uncertain for Game 2 of their Western Conference Finals playoff series against the Golden State Warriors. While a doubtful classification indicates that he still has a 50% chance of playing, the one-day interval between games implies he won't have much time to recover from his ailment.
Bane, along with Ja Morant, is a crucial player for the Grizzlies, often leading the club in scoring. During their first round series against the Minnesota Timberwolves, he averaged 23.5 points on 50% shooting from the field and 49.1% from beyond the arc.
The Memphis Grizzlies must win this game, even though it's early in the series. In light of the Draymond Green dismissal and the crazy offensive output of Jaren Jackson Jr., the club cannot afford to return to Golden State down by two games.
For what it's worth, head coach Taylor Jenkins seemed unconcerned by Bane's ailment, dismissing it as little more than normal pain.
“Des is just dealing with some general soreness that crept up in the game,” Jenkins said, per Commercial Appeal. “Just trying to stay loose. He’s doing alright. Feeling a little sore like most of our guys today.”
In the second half of the Warriors' 117-116 Game 1 loss, Bane was having therapy on his back. In Game 2, he played 33 minutes, his worst since Game 2 of the first round series against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Bane's streak of scoring 20 points or more in four straight postseason games came to an end in Game 1 as he scored nine points on 3-for-10 shooting.
It was unusual for Jenkins to bring in Bane with 3:05 remaining in the fourth quarter. In an interview after the game, Jenkins said that he wanted to keep his players fresh for a potentially long series.
When De'Anthony Melton came off the bench, he scored 14 points and played much of the fourth quarter until Bane came back. Melton played 25 minutes in the playoffs, the most of any player.
"I thought Des was good today," Jenkins said Sunday. "Not at the level he was the last couple of games. Melt was really good. We were just riding the flow of who played well for us."
A win on Tuesday in Game 2 ensures a Game 5 in Memphis. The Grizzlies will do everything possible to beat Golden State at home.
Despite Morant’s huge 34-point game, he missed a game-winning layup and the Grizzlies fell to the Warriors in Game 1. In Game 2, we can anticipate him to snag more rebounds, score more points, and throw out more assists.
Morant was playing tremendously in Game 1. Despite having trouble with his shooting at times, he was essential for the Grizzlies. Like in Game 1, he should get plenty of help from his teammates. Jackson Jr. had a 10-18 field-goal percentage and 6 three-pointers.
He will be the key player for Memphis in this game. Despite his lack of postseason experience, Morant has shown his capacity and skills as a team leader against Jazz. No moment is too huge for Ja Morant.