Randolph, Memphis reserves hand Nuggets sixth straight loss
By Clay Bailey, Associated Press
Posted Dec. 28, 2013 22:31
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- Zach Randolph scored 20 points and the Memphis Grizzlies got 62 points from their bench in a 120-99 victory over the Denver Nuggets on Saturday night.
Six Grizzlies finished in double figures and Memphis shot 52 percent while sending the Nuggets to their sixth straight loss. Ed Davis led the reserves with 17 points, hitting 6 of 8 shots, while Jerryd Bayless finished with 15 points. Mike Conley and James Johnson scored 14 points apiece, and Mike Miller added 11, connecting on 3 of 5 outside the arc.
The 120 points were a season high for Memphis, and only two less than the most the Nuggets have allowed in a game this season.
Ty Lawson led Denver with 20 points and eight assists, while Wilson Chandler finished with 19 points.
The Grizzlies have struggled down the stretch lately, being outscored in the fourth quarter in five of the previous six games. They led by seven early in the final period before a 21-5 burst that included 3-pointers by Conley, Miller and Bayless gave them a 23-point lead. Nuggets coach Brian Shaw started emptying his bench and Memphis outscored Denver 35-27 in the fourth.
The Nuggets, who had struggled from 3-point range during their previous five losses, came out connecting early. Denver hit five of its first eight from outside the arc for an early lead.
Memphis used a 14-1 run in the second quarter to erase the Denver advantage. The teams stayed close the rest of the half, which had 10 ties before the Nuggets carried a 56-55 lead into intermission.
Chandler had 13 at the half for Denver, while Jordan Hamilton and Lawson scored 12 apiece. The Nuggets shot 57 percent from the field, including 5 of 10 from outside the arc.
Memphis, meanwhile, was at 55 percent and 3 for 8 from 3-point range.
The Nuggets began showing the fatigue of playing on the second night of a back-to-back in the third. Denver committed six turnovers in the period and connected on only 6 of 19 shots from the field.
Meanwhile, Randolph was working inside to help Memphis build its first double-digit lead of the night. He scored 10 points in the third, leading Memphis to an 85-72 advantage entering the fourth.
NOTES: The game marked the return of Darrell Arthur to Memphis, but the Nuggets forward didn't play because of a right quadriceps contusion. Arthur, who spent his first five seasons in Memphis, was traded in the offseason for C Kosta Koufos. ... The Nuggets, who lost Friday night to the New Orleans Pelicans, are now 1-5 in the second game of back-to-backs. ... Kenneth Faried returned to action after missing two games with a sprained left ankle. He played 13 minutes, finishing with three points and two rebounds. ... Randolph has led Memphis in scoring in five of the last six games. ... Nate Robinson's 11 points marked the 16th time in last 20 that he has reached double figures off the Denver bench.