Memphis Grizzlies Set Record with Just 1 Free-Throw Attempt

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Memphis Grizzlies Set Record with Just 1 Free-Throw Attempt
Rocky Widner/Getty Images

The Memphis Grizzlies set an odd record in Saturday's 79-76 win over the Atlanta Hawks, becoming the first team in the NBA's shot-clock era to attempt fewer than two free throws in a game.

Veteran guard Courtney Lee attempted and made the Grizzlies' only foul shot, which didn't come until the third quarter. The lone chance was the result of a defensive three-second violation called on Atlanta's Gustavo Ayon.

The previous record-low of two free throws in a game was shared by only two teams, the 1994-95 Cleveland Cavaliers and the 2004-05 New Orleans Hornets. The '94-95 Cavs managed to pull out a win over the Golden State Warriors when they set the record, while the '04-05 Hornets (a 64-loss team) had no such luck against Steve Nash and the Phoenix Suns.

Getting to the line has been an issue for the Grizzlies all season, as Memphis ranks 27th in the NBA with 20.1 free-throw attempts per game. The Spurs rank below Memphis at 29th yet own a 37-14 record, but San Antonio is an excellent jump-shooting team that leads the league in three-point percentage (39.3). The Grizzlies, meanwhile, rank dead last in three-point attempts per game (14.3) and 22nd in three-point percentage (34.7).

Where Memphis has excelled is on the defensive end, as an airtight D has vaulted the Grizzlies right back into the playoff picture. Memphis went 12-3 in January while surrendering less than 100 points in all but three games during the splendid month.

February has been a bit rockier, with the Grizzlies struggling to a 2-3 start amid some ugly offensive performances. Saturday's win over the Hawks was followed by an ugly 91-83 overtime loss to the Cavaliers on Sunday that saw the team make just 38.4 percent of its field-goal attempts.

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