Grizzlies send Spurs home

Posted: April 30, 2011

Zach Randolph had 31 points and 11 rebounds and the Grizzlies advanced to their first Western Conference semifinals and made NBA history in knocking off the top-seeded San Antonio Spurs, 99-91, last night in Memphis.

Memphis had been the franchise best known for empty seats and the unenviable NBA mark for playoff futility at 0-12 after being swept in its first three appearances. This time, a third straight sellout crowd cheered every bucket with a couple signs begging the Grizzlies to "Finish Them" in a town in desperate need of a hero.

The Grizzlies needed 10 seasons, but they have become just that as only the second No. 8 seed to upset a No. 1 seed since the NBA expanded the opening series to a best-of-seven.

They will play Oklahoma City in the semifinals.

Noteworthy

* Celtics coach Doc Rivers said Shaquille O'Neal participated in a limited workout yesterday, a day after he ran through some plays and shot baskets while his teammates practiced in earnest for tomorrow's opener of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Heat in Miami. Rivers said he's more confident than ever that O'Neal, who has been recovering from an injury to his right calf, will play in the series.

"I don't know when," Rivers said. "Maybe [Game] 1, maybe 2."

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