New York, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - Not only will the Memphis Grizzlies have to enter one of the NBA's toughest venues for a do-or-die Game 7 on Saturday, but they'll be doing so without their leading scorer and rebounder.
The league handed All-Star forward Zach Randolph a one-game suspension for throwing a punch to Oklahoma City's Steven Adams during Thursday's Game 6 of the Grizzlies' Western Conference quarterfinal series against the Thunder.
Randolph struck Adams in the jaw with his right hand as the two players were running down the court following a Memphis basket in the fourth quarter.
The Thunder rolled to a 104-84 victory in Game 6 to even the series at 3-3 and set up Saturday's matchup in Oklahoma City.
Randolph was a factor in each of Memphis' three previous wins, scoring a team- best 25 points in Monday's Game 5 and posting double-doubles in the Grizzlies' other two triumphs, both of which came in overtime. The 32-year-old has averaged 18.2 points and 8.7 rebounds in the series.
During the regular season, Randolph averaged 17.4 points and ranked ninth in the league in rebounding at 10.1 boards per game.