Grizzlies 94, Warriors 87By Dave Del Grande, The Sports Xchange | The SportsXchange – Thu, Jan 10, 2013 1:20 AM EST
OAKLAND, Calif. -- The Memphis Grizzlies continued their dominance of the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday night, breaking away from a late tie with a 6-0 run that led to a 94-87 victory at Oracle Arena. In beating Golden State for the second time this season and eighth consecutive time overall, the Grizzlies went right to Marc Gasol on the first possession after a pair of Klay Thompson free throws had gotten the Warriors even at 82-all with 3:32 to go. The big guy was able to overpower Warriors rookie Festus Ezeli for an interior hoop that gave Memphis the lead for good. The Warriors had two chances to tie, but Ezeli missed from in the key and David Lee threw away a pass, after which the Grizzlies' Mike Conley was fouled on a fast break. His two free throws made it a four-point game with 2:11 to go. Jerryd Bayless then blocked a Jarrett Jack jumper and again Conley broke away from the pack, this time converting a layup that completed the game-swinging, six-point run and pushed Memphis to its third consecutive win on the West Coast over a four-day stretch. A Stephen Curry 3-pointer eventually got the Warriors within 90-87 in the final minute, but Zach Randolph capped a 19-point, 12-rebound night with two free throws and then a late layup to close it out. Rudy Gay backed Randolph with 18 points for the Grizzlies, who had recorded a 104-94 win Nov. 2 in the Warriors' home opener. All five Memphis starters scored in double figures. Curry had 20 points and Thompson 20 to lead the Warriors, who missed injured Andrew Bogut's presence on the boards, especially in the fourth quarter. Down by 16 in the second quarter and 11 in the third, the Warriors clawed back into a 74-all tie on a Curry jumper with 7:35 remaining in the game. Randolph countered with a tip-in for the Grizzlies and the Warriors never gained the upper hand, although Thompson's two free throws at the 3:31 mark produced one last tie. The Grizzlies initially took charge in the second period by suffocating the Warriors' usually potent long-range game. Golden State, which entered the game averaging 7.9 successful 3s per outing, went without a hoop from outside the arc for almost the first 21 minutes, during which time it totaled only 38 points while falling behind by 12. Curry ended the drought from the left corner with 3:01 left in the half, and bombed in another before halftime, but it only slightly dented a Grizzlies advantage that was 55-46 at the break. Randolph had 11 points to lead a balanced Memphis attack in the half. NOTES: The Warriors are one team rumored to have inquired about the availability of Grizzlies standout Rudy Gay, who reportedly is being shopped. The Warriors do have a tie to Gay -- he is a longtime friend of Stephen Curry and attended the point guard's wedding in Charlotte two summers ago. ... Asked before the game how he dealt with trade rumors, Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins hardly threw water on the fire, admitting, "I've said many times: You're going to be traded if you play long enough. You live in a community, and while you live in that community, you do what you can to make that community better. Then if you get transferred to another community, you do what you can to make that community better." ... Assessing Gay, Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol, Warriors coach Mark Jackson observed: "They have the best front line in basketball." ... Jackson coached his 100th game for the Warriors on Wednesday. He took a 45-54 record into the contest, never having beaten Memphis. ... This is the Grizzlies' first season under the ownership of Robert Pera, a 34-year-old native of the San Francisco Bay Area. The former Apple engineer made his money as owner of a San Jose-based company that specializes in making products in the wireless-networking industry.
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