The Grizzlies are a great story, and their victory over the Spurs in the first round was no fluke. But even after winning Game 1 against the Thunder, the Grizzlies aren't advancing to the West finals. They're simply not as good as the Thunder.
The Grizzlies had only two days in between series and rode their spirited first-round upset into a spirited Game 1 upset. But when the series settles and adjustments are made, the Thunder's talent will prevail. Oklahoma City possesses the series' two best players — Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook — and a nice collection of role players.
And even though they're young, the Thunder probably felt a sense of relief to be playing Memphis instead of San Antonio. But that false sense of security is over, and the Thunder now know they need to buckle down to defeat the Grizzlies.
Thunder too talented
If this were the NCAA tournament, I'd say it would be possible that the Grizzlies could advance to the Western Conference finals.
But it's not. It's the NBA playoffs, where it takes more than just a hot month of basketball to reach the championship. All great stories come to an end. While their series victory against the Spurs in the first round will go down as one of the greatest upsets in history, their run ends in the conference semifinals.
Memphis made things interesting by capturing Game 1 in Oklahoma City. Its string of surprise victories can last only so long. Eventually, Kevin Durant and the Thunder will come around and take control. They gave the Lakers all they could handle in last year's playoffs. Look for the teams to meet again this year in the conference finals.