Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
Sports | By Nelson Rowe

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The NBA fined the Grizzlies coach $30,000 on Wednesday morning for Fizdale's rant after Memphis' 96-82 loss to San Antonio in Game 2 of their first-round playoff series.

Asked about the $30,000 penalty, Fizdale replied: "That's what they chose to do".

The Grizzlies have enjoyed outbursts from Mike Conley, who scored 24 points in Game 2, and Zach Randolph, who brought 18 points off the bench. "But I'm not going to let them treat us that way". But Gasol only scored 12 points on 4-of-15 shooting in the second game, and it will take a ideal all-around game from Memphis' trio to compete with the second-seeded Spurs.

In his post-game press conference on Tuesday, Fizdale called the officiating "unprofessional and "unacceptable".

"It's unfortunate that I've got a guy like (point guard) Mike Conley that in his whole career has got zero technical fouls and just can not seem to get the proper respect from the officials that he deserves", Fizdale fumed on Monday.

National Basketball Association rules prohibit public criticism of game officials.

Free throws or not, the Grizzlies are at a disadvantage. Every Spurs starter scored in the first 12 minutes and San Antonio went 12 of 12 from the free-throw line. "But somehow Kawhi Leonard had 19 free throws".

San Antonio has never lost a playoff series to the Grizzlies after winning Game 1, sweeping them three times.

"I'm not a numbers guy, but that doesn't seem to add up", Fizdale said. Late in the period Conley, trapped by stifling defense by San Antonio's Manu Ginobili along the sideline in front of the Grizzlies' bench, called time out, flipped the ball behind his back into the court and strode right off the floor and into a chair. We had 15 free throws for the game. "Explain it to me". "So if someone is going to commit two people to him, we should be able to take advantage of it". "But we're looking forward to the next game". "Players in general and coaches pull this card a lot", Fizdale said.

"That whole thing Fiz did kind of sparked everybody and created some excitement around here in a weird way", he said.

"This team has character, besides the talent and the desire to win", Spurs center Pau Gasol said. He said he assumed the coach was trying to fire up the Grizzlies. "I think coach finally got fed up". "There's no other twist about it". "You want to get to this level, and then you start getting double-teamed but it's all fun".

Memphis' biggest problem thus far has been its inability to slow down Leonard. He averaged 2.0 points and 1.5 rebounds in four games with San Antonio following a successful stint with the NBA Development League's Austin Spurs.

"It's a gift and a curse", Leonard told reporters of the double teams. "Memphis is a physical team throwing a lot of bodies at me".

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