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Final Grizzlies 103, Hornets 91 - April 18, 2012

Joe Murphy/NBAE/Getty Images

Key Stat of the Night

Memphis overwhelmed New Orleans in the third quarter, making 15 of its 20 field goal attempts (.750) and outscoring the Hornets 37-12… The Grizzlies forced the Hornets into more turnovers (11) than shot attempts (8) in the quarter, tying a franchise record for forced turnovers in a quarter.

Key Run of the Night

Trailing by one point (47-48) at the half, Memphis exploded out of the locker room on a 20-4 run to start the third quarter… The Grizzlies would outscore the Hornets 37-12 in the third to push the lead up to 24 points by the start of the fourth.

Player Notes

Rudy Gay led the Grizzlies with 26 points in the 103-91 home win over the Hornets on Wednesday. Mike Conley tallied 20 points and O.J. Mayo had 15. The win moved the Grizzlies to 1.5 games behind the Clippers for fourth place and a playoff berth. Next, the Grizzlies travel to Charlotte to take on the Bobcats on Friday at 6 p.m.

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Highlight of the Night

Game Notes

  • With tonight’s win, the Grizzlies clinched their second consecutive playoff berth.
  • Memphis has won a season-high eight consecutive home games, the team’s longest home winning streak since it won a franchise-record 11-in-a-row at FedExForum from Dec. 18, 2009-Jan. 25, 2010.
  • Memphis snapped New Orleans’ season-high four-game winning streak.
  • The Grizzlies are 11-6 on the front end of a back-to-back set and moved to 12-5 in the second game.
  • The Grizzlies are a perfect 13-0 when shooting .500 from the field and 16-3 when scoring 100 points or more in a game.
  • Memphis finished 3-1 in the 2011-12 series against New Orleans.
  • Memphis held the Hornets to 12 points in the third quarter, tying an opponent low for third quarter points (Feb. 2 at Atlanta).
  • Memphis attempted a season-high 22 three-pointers, making 8 from beyond the arc.

Up Next:

  • Grizzlies at Bobcats, Friday, April 20, 6:00pm - Tune In.

They said...

Coach Hollins

On resting players before the playoffs:

“We’re in a different position this year. Last year, it didn’t matter if we were eight or seven; both teams were going to be a tough matchup whether it was one or two. This year, we have a possibility to get all the way to three. We’ll just play until we see. I’m not going to try to kill our guys, but we’re going to try to stay at least where we are at five. It will be game-to-game. I haven’t really thought about it too much.”

On the third quarter:

“We did the same thing last night in Minnesota. When you play teams that are under .500, sometimes it’s hard to rev it up mentally. I thought, in the third quarter, we came out and got out there. We started out the first four or five possessions with turnovers by them. We just kept turning them over. I think in the third quarter they had 11 turnovers. They had 24 for the game. We held them to 24 percent shooting. We just attacked them. We played really well. I won’t say we played as well as we could play, but we played really well. I was hoping that we could do that and I could just sub and let guys sit on the bench for the fourth quarter, which for the most part I did. I had to put Marc (Gasol) back into the game on the foul-out. Then, I put Mike (Conley) back in the game because I didn’t want it to get back inside of 10.”

On the playoffs:

“Two times in a row – we didn’t want to be a one-and-done kind of group. We had a lot of success last year and we just wanted to make sure we got back. When you’re there, you never know what happens. As I told the team, it’s a wide open season. There are a lot of good teams, but it’s still wide open. There’s nobody really dominating. San Antonio has had a great season. Oklahoma City has had a great season; Miami, too. There are three or four teams that have as far as records are concerned. I don’t know that anybody dominated anybody. It’s wide open for anybody to win the championship. As I told you guys when I got hired, when I was asked why I should be head coach, ‘Why not.’ It’s the same thing I said to the team, ‘Why not us win the championship?'"

On this year’s roster being better prepared for the playoffs vs. last year’s roster:

“We have a more athletic power forward/backup center. Hamed (Haddadi) has improved tremendously as a backup center. Our young players have had one more year of growth and improvement, which was seen during most of the year with Zach (Randolph) out. Mike Conley has played outstanding. Rudy (Gay) has played outstanding. O.J. (Mayo) has embraced his role to the hilt and has played outstanding. I would say maybe, but that doesn’t guarantee anything. We have to go out there and do it.”

On Rudy Gay:

“I do feel good for Rudy (being able to participate this year). As far as Rudy’s play, I’ve seen him play as well, maybe not as consistently, for a long period of time. He has been fabulous. I’ve spoken to him about how well he has played. He has rebounded. He’s defended. He’s passed the ball and made plays for other people and he’s scored. I always say, a player like Rudy, when they’re young, they have to learn to embrace their talent. Too often, they want to do one thing when their talent says they can do multiple things and he is starting to embrace that. He can make big defensive plays and get big rebounds, attack the basket, make plays for other people and guard his man.”

On Zach Randolph:

I feel good for Zach. At the beginning of the year when Zach got hurt, it was like we weren’t going to be here. It’s like the team rallied around itself and created a new identity and achieved a goal we set out to have when we were fully healthy.”

“As far as Zach is concerned, he’s fine. The last two games he’s been a lot more aggressive. We had a conversation before the Minnesota game about my expectations for him. He told me what he was trying to do and I told him I wanted him to do versus what he wanted to do. He’s been doing all right. He scores and rebounds, that’s what he does. Last night, he had a huge game. He didn’t get as many points or rebounds but he was still effective. We need that from Zach. We don’t need him to be a facilitator of the ball…I think from a health perspective he is 100 percent healthy. Is he 100 percent in rhythm and all of that? It’s getting better. Each game it gets better. I thought last night he was outstanding.”

O.J. Mayo

On making back-to-back playoff appearances:

“It feels great. It’s definitely an accomplishment, two years straight being able to get into the postseason. It seemed like yesterday we would be at home watching the postseason wishing that we could be there and just couldn’t wait until the next season to get better and give ourselves another opportunity to get there. It’s the second straight year, and we’re very happy.”

On the team’s excitement this year compared to last year in clinching a playoff berth:

“We definitely hold high expectations for ourselves, and I feel like we’ve gotten there last year with a man down, which is Rudy. So now, we’ve got everybody back, 100 percent healthy and we’re looking forward to the second year.”

Rudy Gay

On the difference between making the playoffs this year compared to last year:

“We did expect it (this year). I think I’m the only one that’s really excited or a little emotional because honestly I didn’t get to play at all last year. It was good to be there and experience it but I might as well have bought a ticket.”

On the message delivered at halftime:

“We just really had to pick up our intensity. We went out there like they were giving us the game, but nobody’s going to give us that game. When you have guys out there hungry like Jerome Dyson out there playing like he was; he’s trying to make a name for himself, so you have to expect people to go out there and give it their all.”