Posted: 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2013
By Brett Ludwiczak
The game between Memphis and the Clippers on Monday night saw three of six former Buckeyes on NBA rosters currently take the floor at Staples Center.
Monday night's Buckeye alumni game at Staples Center didn't disappoint, with the Grizzlies taking a 106-102 decision. There was plenty to report on from former Buckeyes bouncyballers over the past week, with ET continuing his early season roll and a former Buckeye big man producing his best game of the season. One name that was in the previous two editions of "Keeping Up' has been Greg Oden, and while he isn't on the list this week that doesn't mean that the Heat got rid of him. There has been no new information on the former top pick's recovery and possible return to the floor during the regular, but we will keep you updated when news becomes available.
Mike Conley - PG - Memphis Grizzlies
After starting off the season slow, the Grizzlies have started to get back to their winning ways, winning their last three games after dropping their first game of the week to Toronto. Not surprisingly, Conley's assists numbers have been up so far in the mini winning streak that Memphis has going. In a win over the Lakers on Friday night, Conley had 7 assists, and then followed that up with 9 assists on Sunday against Sacramento. Stat-wise, the best game of the week for Conley was in the loss to Toronto on Wednesday, where Conley scored 29 points and was able to grab 3 steals. The shooting from Conley has been better this year, with the point guard shooting 51% from the field so far after averaging 44% during his NBA career. In three out of the four games last week Conley was able to shoot 50% from the field or better. If Conley can keep up the hot shooting and add that to his play-making and defense, Memphis should be able to rebound from the tough start to the season and turn into a tough out for any team in the playoffs.
Kosta Koufos - F/C - Memphis Grizzlies
Monday night's huge win on the road against the Clippers saw Koufos give the Grizzlies his best game so far in this young season. In 18 minutes on the floor Koufos was almost able to throw up a double-double with 10 points and 9 rebounds. Koufos not only sunk all five of the shots he took from the field, but he had a hand in swatting four shots from the Clippers. In comparison with the other three games of the week, Koufos only scored 10 combined points, showing just how huge he was for the Grizzlies off the bench on Monday night. While Koufos is still adjusting to his role off the bench for the Grizzlies after starting 81 games for the Nuggets last year, he is still giving solid contributions to Memphis on the defensive end. In 16 minutes/game so far this year, the backup to Marc Gasol is averaging a rebound every four minutes. Monday night's performance could give Koufos a boost in confidence and help Memphis to extend their three-game winning streak.
Evan Turner - G/F - Philadelphia 76ers
The four games that Turner has played in over the past week have resulted in three very good performances and one dud. After inconsistencies on the court last season, it is nice to see Turner performing at a high level on a regular basis. The strongest performance of the week for Turner came in the Monday night 97-94 loss to the Mavericks, in which ET almost got a triple-double. In 36 minutes on the court, Turner poured in 26 points, grabbed 9 rebounds and dished out 7 assists. The lone win of the week for the 76ers was a 123-117 overtime win that saw Turner play 46 minutes and score 23 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists. The dud of the week was in the lopsided 135-98 loss at New Orleans on Saturday where Turner only had 4 points on 2-11 shooting from the field. One of the few faults that has been seen this year in Turner's game has been the turnovers that he's been committing. In the loss to Atlanta on Friday, Turner turned the basketball over seven times, and in Monday's game against Dallas he committed another four turnovers. Even while committing 3.5 turnovers/game, Turner is more than making up for it with 22 points/game and 6.3 rebounds/game he is putting up.
Jared Sullinger - PF - Boston Celtics
The week got off to a rough start for Sullinger, when he missed Wednesday night's game against Charlotte with a bone bruise on his knee. The Celtics lost the game to the Bobcats 89-83, which ended the four-game winning streak that the Boston had going. Friday night against Portland saw Sullinger return in a big way, scoring 26 points and grabbing 8 rebounds in 36 minutes, but it wasn't enough as the Celtics lost 109-96. Sullinger couldn't build on that performance though, only playing 14 minutes the following night at Minnesota, and only scoring 3 points in the 106-88 Boston loss. After the four-game winning streak the Celtics have now lost three games in a row to fall to 4-7 so far in the young season.
Byron Mullens - F/C - Los Angeles Clippers
Last week was a mixed bag of results for Mullens, with a good game, bad game, and a so-so performance. The bad game was more a product of Mullens barely seeing the floor. In Wednesday night's win over Oklahoma City, Mullens was only on the court for 5 minutes, hitting a free throw for his only point of the game. The following game on Saturday came Mullens' "good game", as he doubled his time on the floor in the win over Brooklyn. Mullens hit all four shots he took, including two 3-pointers, on his way to 10 points against the shorthanded Nets. The only game the Clippers lost during the week was on Monday to Memphis, in which the artist formerly known as B.J. Mullens hit two more three-pointers, but committed four fouls and was a -8 in 14 minutes on the floor. The sold shooting from long range during the week was promising for Mullens, and if he can keep that up he could see some extended time off the bench and give the Clippers another weapons. The key for Mullens will be for him not to force his shot when he isn't hitting from distance. The Clippers front court is crowded, but a perimeter option could really help Los Angeles since there isn't a lot of range among their big men.