Grizzlies 109, Suns 99

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP)—James Posey doesn’t remember the last time he was shooting this well.

Posey scored 32 points and went 4-for-7 on 3-pointers to lead the Memphis Grizzlies to their seventh straight win, a 109-99 victory over the Phoenix Suns on Friday night.

Posey topped 30 points for the second straight game. He came in averaging 13 points, but coming off a 38-point performance in the Grizzlies’ 136-133 double overtime victory over Atlanta on Monday.

“I’m just continuing to work on my game and take my shots with confidence,” Posey said.

Posey, who is known more for his tough defense than his shooting touch, was asked how long it had been since he enjoyed such scoring success.

“I couldn’t tell you,” he said.

Memphis coach Hubie Brown said Posey has found the Grizzlies’ fast-pace offense to his liking. Posey joined the Grizzlies as a free agent from Houston during the offseason.

“His game has flourished here because he excels in this style,” Brown said. “He’s a real professional, knows his job. As you know, he guards the best two or three that the other team has. That’s a tough assignment every night and he never says a word.”

Amare Stoudemire had 31 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks to lead the Suns. Shawn Marion, who hit his first seven shots, had 22 points and 12 rebounds.

Pau Gasol, the Grizzlies’ leading scorer played only 15 minutes and scored 10 points. Gasol hurt his right foot against Atlanta but team doctors say the injury is not serious.

Memphis got 17 points from Jason Williams and 11 from Stromile Swift.

With an announced crowd of 19,350, the Grizzlies had back-to-back crowds over 19,000 for only the second time in Memphis.

The Grizzlies began the game hitting seven of nine shots, including five 3-pointers. Posey sank three 3s during the fast start.

Memphis used a 14-1 run in the second period to grab a 59-53 halftime lead.

Aside from his stellar shooting night, Posey also helped his coach avoid getting a technical foul in the second quarter.

Assistant Memphis coach Tony Barone was called for a technical foul with 3:21 left in the half, upsetting Brown. Posey got between Brown and official Ron Garretson, holding a towel in front of Brown’s face until the coach calmed down.

Joe Johnson scored 17 points and Antonio McDyess added 16 for Phoenix.

“They came in and played hard defense,” Stoudemire said. “Coach Brown wasn’t happy with the defense of the first unit and the second unit came in behind them playing stronger defense.”

Notes

Memphis C Lorenzen Wright played for the first time since missing 13 games with a strained right knee. … Grizzlies G Bonzi Wells did not play in the second half because of a back strain. He played 10 minutes and scored 2 points. … Memphis is a league best 24-5 since Feb. 1. … The Suns were without G Howard Eisley (hernia), C Jake Voskuhl (left foot) and C Jahidi White (right knee).

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Top Performers

 Top Performers
 Phoenix
A. Stoudemire A. Stoudemire
12-23,  31 Pts
10 Rebs, 3 Assists
 Memphis
J. Williams J. Williams
6-10,  17 Pts
3 Rebs, 9 Assists

Team Stat Leaders

Points
Rebounds
Assists