The Memphis Grizzlies steamrolled over Western Conference leaders Los Angeles Lakers, coming away with a 105-88 win led by rookie Ja Morant. Morant scored a season/career-high 27 points, coupled with 14 assists and 6 rebounds.

His excellent passing put two other Grizzlies in scoring form, with Dillon Brooks scoring 24 and Lithuanian center Jonas Valančiūnas scoring 22. Valančiūnas also grabbed an incredible 20 rebounds for the Grizzlies.

Morant also set a career-high of four three-pointers in one game. Valančiūnas, in the meantime, had his second game with 20 or more rebounds, the first player in Memphis history to have completed such a feat.

Lakers' superstars were shut down, with LeBron James scoring only 19 points and Anthony Davis 15. Only two other Lakers scored over 10 points.

Their win improved their chances of holding on to the 8th place of the Western Conference. Their 29-31 record is still within reach by the 26-33 New Orleans Pelicans, 25-33 San Antonio Spurs, 26-35 Portland Trail Blazers, and 25-34 Sacramento Kings.

Seventh-place belongs to the Dallas Mavericks at 36-24. They are too far away for anyone to catch up unless a miracle happens in the last 20 games of the regular season.

If the Grizzlies hold on to their position, they will face the Los Angeles Lakers in the first round of the playoffs. If this game is an indicator of how their matchup will turn out, it's a bad sign for the Lakers. According to the Associated Press, Lakers coach Frank Vogel said the Grizzlies were playing out of desperation. They (the Lakers) weren't able to match the energy the young Grizzlies showed on the floor.

The 88-point game was a season-low for the Lakers and does not reflect their usual performance. However, they did not discredit the great game played by the Grizzlies. Coach Vogel admired the intensity and balanced scoring shown by the Grizzlies, a well as the 20 rebounds by Jonas Valančiūnas.

The analysis was accurate. The Grizzlies played great while the top-seeded Lakers played their worst game of the season. Memphis needs to keep playing as if every game is their last, because that's the only way they will keep the ranking against several teams competing for their 8th and final playoff slot.

Memphis Grizzlies
The Memphis Grizzlies Wikipedia