Memphis Grizzlies

Dillon Brooks, Andrew Wiggins headline showcase of Canadian talent as Memphis Grizzlies earn big win over Minnesota Timberwolves

This season, the Memphis Grizzlies are celebrating the 25th anniversary of an existence that began in Canada.

Fittingly, the two Canadians on Memphis' roster made their mark in the team's second win of the season.

MORE: Canadian talent on full display early on in 2019-20

With former No. 1 overall pick Andrew Wiggins (Toronto, ON) and the Minnesota Timberwolves visiting the FedEx Forum Wednesday night, the Grizzlies rode the hot hand of Dillon Brooks (Mississauga, ON) en route to a 137-121 win.

Brooks, who was selected 45th overall in 2017, was nothing short of spectacular as he scored a game-high 31 points in an efficient fashion, shooting 9-for-16 from the field, 5-for-7 from deep and a perfect 8-for-8 from the charity stripe in 30 minutes of action. With Wiggins scoring 30 points in the game, it marked the first time in history that two Canadians scored 30 or more points in the same game (per Brian Swane, Canada West)… more on Wiggins later.

After missing the majority of last season due to injury, Wednesday night's performance was a step in the right direction for Brooks, whose only other 30-point game came at the end of his rookie season in 2018. Through seven games this season, the 23-year-old is averaging 15.1 points per game and is hitting 2.0 triples per game at a 41.2% clip.

Brooks makes up one half of the Grizzlies' backcourt of the future alongside rookie Ja Morant, who finished with 26 points in 26 minutes of action.

Memphis' other rookie, Brandon Clarke (Vancouver, BC), just so happens to hail from the city in which the team played its first six seasons. While the 23-year-old Clarke wasn't yet born when the Grizzlies earned their second win in franchise history against the Timberwolves in Vancouver in 1995, he certainly made his mark in the second win of the Memphis Grizzlies 2019-20 season.

In 22 minutes of action off the bench, Clarke scored 18 points (on perfect 7-for-7 shooting from the field and 4-for-4 shooting from the charity stripe), grabbed eight rebounds, dished out two assists and was a team-best plus-30 in the box score.

Clarke, who was selected 21st overall in this year's draft, is now averaging 11.3 points (on 60.7% shooting) and 6.4 rebounds through the first seven games of his career. It would appear that Memphis has found its do-it-all energy guy for the future in addition to having shored up its backcourt.

Just for good measure, Wiggins' season-high 30 points (on 11-for-21 shooting) came along with six assists in 34 minutes of action. He knocked down three triples on the night and is now connecting on over two 3s per game at a 34.0% clip this season.

It's early, but his scoring average through the Wolves first seven games is 22.4 points - an increase of over four points from last season. With a continued focus to develop his long-range shooting, there are sure to be more big nights from Wiggins.

In a year that has seen a historic number of Canadians get drafted (six) and yet another record number of Canadians on opening day rosters (16), there is plenty of reason to believe that Wednesday night's history made by Brooks and Wiggins is one of many milestones that will come from the league's Canadian talent this season.

The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA or its clubs.

More from

NBA Foundation grantee spotlight: The Collective Blueprint
NBA Foundation grantee spotlight: The Collective Blueprint Staff
Jaren Jackson Jr., Kevin Porter Jr. and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander are among the leading MIP candidates for 2021-22 NBA season
Our picks for this season's Most Improved Player Staff
Washington Wizards trade acquisitions from the 2021 offseason
Wizards depth chart for 2021-22 season
Yash Matange
Washington Wizards
Are retooled Wizards ready to take next step?
Yash Matange
Toronto Raptors rookie Scottie Barnes
Raptors rookie Barnes says he 'couldn't be happier'
Scott Rafferty
Bradley Beal and Spencer Dinwiddie will play a big part in the Washington Wizards' hopes of reaching the postseason in the Eastern Conference.
What to make of the new-look Wizards
Kane Pitman
More News