The Memphis Grizzlies failed to take down the Stephen Curry-less Golden State Warriors on Christmas Day, but hey, at least Ja Morant gave their fans a massive treat.
Morant, playing in his first Christmas Day game, exploded for 36 points, seven rebounds and eight assists. He made 15 of his 29 shots and was the lone bright spot for the Grizzlies, with the rest of the team unable to breach 20 points in the 123-109 loss.
In the process, Morant joined Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as just the second player in history to have a 35-5-5 stat line or better in his Christmas Day game debut.
Sure enough, Morant would have preferred to win. After all, it was supposed to be their revenge game after the Warriors sent them packing home during the 2022 playoffs. And with Stephen Curry absent, it was the perfect opportunity for them to get a W and further solidify their place as the top seed in the West,
Unfortunately, the Warriors’ balanced offense led by Jordan Poole was just too much for the Grizzlies. Poole finished with 32 points, while Klay Thompson had 24. Draymond Green, who was questionable heading to the contest, also had an insane double-double of 13 rebounds and 13 assists as he kept the Dubs offense functioning.
Morant’s historic feat is still a nice consolation, but hopefully, the latest defeat will make the rest of the Grizzlies hungrier the next time they play the Warriors. Memphis and Golden State will next meet on January 25, with the Dubs hosting it again at Chase Center.