The day before the Memphis Grizzlies hosted the Utah Jazz in Game 3 of their first-round playoff series, 22-year-old Grizzlies guard De’Anthony Melton was asked to describe the difference between regular-season basketball and playoff basketball. Forget for a second that it was Melton, a relatively unimportant rotation player. What Melton said was spot-on. It applies to any team in the playoffs, but especially to an inexperienced eighth seed that is facing a No. 1 seed.

As part of his answer, Melton said: “Almost every possession matters. You’ve just got to make sure you take care of the ball, get back, do the little stuff. And for sure, details — you’ve got to make sure your details are on point in the playoffs, because one little thing (goes wrong) and you can get burned for it.





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