Late spurt pushes Grizzlies past Warriors
Ja Morant hit a short jumper with 2:27 remaining to give Memphis the lead for good and the host Grizzlies overcame the shorthanded Golden State Warriors 111-103 on Saturday night to avoid a two-game sweep.
Jonas Valanciunas took advantage of the absence of Golden State’s top three big men to record a 19-point, 15-rebound double-double, helping the Grizzlies avenge a 116-103 loss to the Warriors on Friday.
Jordan Poole, once again starting in place of injured Stephen Curry, paced Golden State with 26 points.
Despite going without Curry, as well as big men James Wiseman, Kevon Looney and Eric Paschall, the Warriors hung around with the motivated Grizzlies and actually took a 100-99 lead on a Poole 3-pointer with just 2:43 to play.
But Morant, who had been struggling from the field, recovered a loose ball and floated in a 12-footer for the hoop that triggered a late run.
Grayson Allen turned a steal into a dunk, Brandon Clarke added a dunk of his own and Morant tipped in his own miss to complete an 8-0 flurry that finally put the Grizzlies in command.
Dillon Brooks matched Valanciunas’ team-high, 19-point total for Memphis, which won for just the second time in its last six games.
Clarke contributed 16 points to a balanced attack, while Desmond Bane added 15, Morant 14 and Kyle Anderson 13 for the Grizzlies.
Morant, who shot just 5 of 20 from the field, had a game-high eight assists in the win.
— NBA (@NBA) March 21, 2021ADVERTISEMENT
Neither team shot well in the rematch, but Memphis had the better of it, hitting 38.9 percent from the floor, while Golden State finished at just 34.4 percent.
Andrew Wiggins, who had a season-best 40 points in Friday’s win, finished with 20 the second time around. He also found time for a team-high nine rebounds.
Kelly Oubre Jr. chipped in with 12 points and Juan Toscano-Anderson with 11 for Golden State, which was seeking a three-game road sweep after beginning its trip with a win at Houston on Wednesday.
Poole and Toscano-Anderson made three 3-pointers apiece, helping Golden State outscore Memphis 39-30 on 3-pointers. But it took the Warriors 41 attempts to get the 39 points, while the Grizzlies took nine fewer.
"Our guys responded. They've done a great job all season long."
— FOX Sports Grizzlies (@GrizzliesOnFSSE) March 21, 2021
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