Gary Harris had 26 points and four steals as the Denver Nuggets extended the Memphis Grizzlies’ woes with a 108-102 victory on Friday at FedExForum in Memphis, Tenn.
Will Barton scored 24 points on 10-of-14 shooting off the bench for Denver, which halted a two-game slide. Paul Millsap added 15 points and five steals.
Marc Gasol had 22 points and nine rebounds but couldn’t prevent the Grizzlies from suffering a season-worst 12th straight defeat. Jarell Martin scored 16 points on 8-of-12 shooting, Dillon Brooks added 13 points, and Ben McLemore and Mario Chalmers tallied 12 points apiece.
Memphis, which committed 20 turnovers, suffered through an 11-game skid earlier this season.
Denver was even sloppier with 24 turnovers but shot 54.8 percent from the field. The Grizzlies shot 44 percent.
The Nuggets received back-to-back dunks from Barton and Mason Plumlee to open the fourth quarter to increase their lead to 95-80. The Grizzlies rattled off the next 11 points with a 3-pointer by Gasol cutting Denver’s lead to four with 7:53 remaining.
Gasol converted a three-point play with 5:06 left to pull Memphis within 101-96. Two free throws by Chalmers cut the deficit to three with 3:56 to play before Harris slammed home a dunk with 2:38 remaining.
Gasol hit two free throws with 1:38 left to bring the Grizzlies within 104-102 but Harris hit a jumper with 59 seconds remaining and Barton made two free throws with 12.5 seconds to play to put it away.
Denver held a nine-point halftime lead and increased its lead to 76-62 on Harris’ floater with 7:37 left in the third. Another basket by Harris gave the Nuggets an 83-71 lead with 3:10 to go before the Grizzlies used a 7-2 run to move with seven.
Denver responded with six straight to push the lead to 13 before settling for a 91-80 advantage entering the final stanza.
The Nuggets shot 60.5 percent from the field in the first half en route to a 63-54 lead at the break.
Harris scored eight straight points — a layup, a 3-pointer and three free throws after being fouled shooting a 3 — as Denver opened up a 48-34 lead with 9:04 left in the second quarter. Millsap delivered a dunk and 3-pointer later in the stanza as the advantage stood at 16 with 5:04 remaining.
Memphis responded with a 12-3 burst to cut its deficit to seven before Barton knocked down a 22-foot buzzer-beating shot to end the half.
—Field Level Media