The Memphis Grizzlies are coming under a lot of fire since their Game 2 win over the Golden State Warriors. The biggest moment from the game was Dillon Brooks injuring Gary Payton II on a hard foul at the start of the game, causing GPII to get injured and miss time. Brooks has been suspended for the same.
Steve Kerr outright called the play a dirty play and also alluded to Brooks breaking a code amongst basketball players to not cause an injury. The Grizzlies' rough-and-tough mentality had been charming the league up until now, but the tides are turning and Memphis are developing a reputation as dirty players with their physicality and braggadocious behavior.
Coach Taylor Jenkins has molded this group of youngsters into genuine contenders and wasn't going to accept people saying such things about his team. He set the record straight while talking to media ahead of Game 3 in Golden State on Saturday.
“We obviously wishy Gary Payton a speedy and healthy recover, you never want to see anybody get hurt, very unfortubate. But I also want to address a narrative that was said between Game 1 and Game 2 that we are playing more physical, obviously dirty has been thrown out there. I look at my locker room and I look at our culture and what we exude, we’re the furthest thing from dirty. We’re competitive, so I want that to be squashed pretty quick here.”
Jenkins standing up for his squad is admirable considering how young they are. He is the leading voice in the locker room and the players trust and believe in him to lead them.
Game 3 is going to be tough for Memphis, as the GSW home crowd will make sure the Grizzlies feel their wrath and intensity. But if they can steal a game from GSW at the Case Center? It will make this series very interesting.