Stoudamire Returns, Leads Grizzlies
Memphis 115, Phoenix 103
PHOENIX, Nov. 16 (Ticker) -- Mike Miller played through pain and made the most of his first start of the season.
Damon Stoudamire scored a season-high 26 points and Miller added a season-high 24 as the Memphis Grizzlies won their third consecutive game, a 115-103 victory over the Phoenix Suns.
After suffering a bruised right knee in Monday's victory over the Los Angeles Lakers, Miller was listed as questionable. However, he scored 16 points in the first half as the Grizzlies shot 51 percent (21-of-41) from the field.
"My knee got warm right away and I played a lot of minutes, so it stayed warm," Miller said. "I knew I was going to start this morning. They start their lineup small and we combated that and played well tonight."
Bobby Jackson, a former Sixth Man Award winner, came off the bench to hit three 3-pointers in the second quarter, including two which capped a 25-6 run that gave Memphis a 58-48 lead.
Eddie Jones opened the second half with a pair of 3-pointers and Stoudamire followed with a steal from 2005 NBA MVP Steve Nash that he turned into a three-point play to highlight an 11-2 burst for a 74-58 edge.
"We obviously hit shots, but our defense in certain situations was great," Stoudamire said. "We were able to sustain a lead, keeping it up over 10, 11, from the third quarter on. I made a conscious effort to come out aggressive and when I do that from the jump, it makes the game a lot easier."
"The last couple of games, the third quarter has been a momentum swing," Miller said. "That has been a focus for us."
Shane Battier scored 18 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, Jackson scored 16 points and Pau Gasol added 14 and 10 for the Grizzlies, who had six players score in double figures.
"We had different segments in the game where different people were carrying us offensively," Grizzlies coach Mike Fratello said. "It was almost like now it is your turn and now your turn and then Damon in the end. He made huge shots for us. It was good to see his stroke come back."
Phoenix fell to 3-4, with all four defeats at home. The Suns did not drop their fourth game last season until December 28 and their fourth home contest until January 21.
"This was not a good effort," Suns coach Mike D'Antoni said. "The first half, we were lethargic. Maybe we had too many days off. I don't know. We let them have the opportunities because we didn't play hard enough. They played better at our game then we did and that can't happen."
Shawn Marion scored 23 points and grabbed 11 rebounds and Nash added 17 with 13 assists for the Suns, who lost for the fourth time in 21 home meetings against the Grizzlies.
"They had a six- or seven-point lead for a while, then they got comfortable," Marion said. "When you get comfortable and you don't have any pressure on you, shots go down a lot easier."