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Grizzlies give Spurs a late scare

  • Written by Kelley Evans
  • Published in Original

grizzspurs 600San Antonio Spurs beat the Memphis Grizzlies for the seventh straight time Tuesday night, escaping the FedExForum with a 110-108 overtime victory that could have been measured in inches.

While the Spurs have been beating the Grizz with regularity, this latest confrontation was in doubt right up to the time Mike Conley's three-point attempt from 29 feet bounced off the front of the rim as time expired.

Conley played big in a game in which Memphis erased a 16-point deficit, including a 10-point hole entering the fourth quarter. Conley led the Grizzlies with 30 points, 11 coming down the stretch in the final frame. His last-play drive to the basket yielded a game-tying bucket that sent the game into overtime.

"Going into the fourth quarter, more than anything I saw that I was going to have to take some more shots, be more aggressive, try to get to the rim and get to the free throw line," Conley said. "I knew Zach (Randolph) was getting double teamed all night."

IMG dunktime_6588-2Disappointed about blowing the big lead, the Spurs got themselves together in time to come out on top in OT. They played without center Tiago Splitter, who has been known to give Grizz big man Randolph a hard time down low. Splitter suffered a right shoulder sprain in the Spurs' win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday.

Riding a wave of energy, Memphis actually outscored the Spurs in the paint, 55-50. The Grizz also won the battle of the bench, with 44 points to the Spurs' 38. San Antonio turned the ball over three times in the final two minutes of the fourth quarter.

For Memphis, Randolph finished with 17 points. James Johnson was huge off the bench, scoring a season-high 15, including a game-tying three late in the heart-racing last quarter.

Tim Duncan led the Spurs with 24 points (his season high) and 17 rebounds. Marco Belinelli added 19

Memphis guard Tony Allen missed his second straight game with a contusion to his left hand contusion. Acquired in a trade that sent Jerryd Bayless to Boston, newcomer Courtney Lee finished with 12 points in his Memphis debut.

"We showed character and continued to fight," Lee said. "I'm happy to be a part of this team."

• Tuesday's game against the Spurs was the third of four this season.
• Coming into the contest, the Grizzlies had completed a three-game road stint, defeating the Phoenix Suns and the Detroit Pistons and falling to the Denver Nuggets.
• The Grizz play the Phoenix Suns at the FedExForum on Friday.

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