Tyreke Evans scored 28 points, including the last seven in the game for Memphis, to lead the Grizzlies past the New Orleans Pelicans 105-102 Wednesday night at FedEx Forum.
Evans canned a 3-pointer with 1:26 left to give the Grizzlies (13-27) a 101-97 lead. He added two free throws with 1:01 remaining to make it 103-100, and sank two more foul shots with 5.9 seconds left to restore a three-point lead.
New Orleans (20-20) was out of timeouts and had to rush the ball down the floor after Evans’ final set of free throws. E‘Twaun Moore got off a potential game-tying 3-pointer just before the horn, but couldn’t convert.
Marc Gasol came close to a triple-double for Memphis with 21 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists. JaMychal Green added 20 points and 14 rebounds, while Andrew Harrison contributed 11 points.
DeMarcus Cousins tossed in a game-high 29 points for the Pelicans, but committed his fifth turnover of the game when Gasol stole the ball from him with 7.0 seconds remaining to set up Evans’ clinching foul shots. Moore tallied 16, Rajon Rondo scored 14 points and Jrue Holliday was good for 12.
New Orleans lit up Memphis in the first quarter, establishing a 38-29 lead when Ian Clark drove for a layup with 18.2 seconds remaining. Rondo and Cousins spearheaded the fast start with 12 and 11 points, respectively.
The Grizzlies went to work on the defensive end in the middle two quarters. They erased the Pelicans’ early lead and actually grabbed a 58-55 advantage on a Tyler Ennis layup with 47.0 seconds left in the half before Moore sank a 3-pointer and then made three foul shots in the final 31.8 seconds to give New Orleans a 61-58 edge at the half.
After permitting just 23 points in the second quarter, Memphis clamped down in the third period, yielding only nine points. But its offense struggled as well, and the Grizzlies settled for a 77-70 margin going into the fourth quarter when Evans drained a free throw with 2.3 seconds left.
--Field Level Media