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Gay, Randolph help Grizzlies beat Rockets

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Associated Press
11/9/2012 11:12:54 PM
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Zach Randolph had 15 points and 14 rebounds, Rudy Gay finished with 21 points and a key basket with 1:03 left, and the Memphis Grizzlies won their fourth straight with a 93-85 victory over the Houston Rockets on Friday night.

Houston was within 87-85 in the final 2 minutes, but Memphis scored the last five points of the game, including Gay's rebound bucket, to win their 13th consecutive regular-season game at home.

Mike Conley had 14 points for Memphis, including a 3-pointer down the stretch, and Jerryd Bayless added 12. The Grizzlies are 4-1 for the first time since the 2000-01 season, when they played in Vancouver.

Chandler Parsons led the Rockets with 19 points, including 15 in the second half. James Harden had 18 points, but shot only 4 of 18 from the field and 1 of 6 outside the arc. Jeremy Lin had 15 points, while Omer Asik added 10 points and 13 rebounds.

The loss was the Rockets' first on the road this season.

Memphis won despite shooting only 37 per cent from the field. Randolph was 5 of 13 and Marc Gasol (six points) missed nine of his 12 shots.

Houston managed 41 per cent from the field but was stymied by 20 turnovers, including 12 in the second half.

Memphis, as it did in its home opener against Utah this week, started out misfiring, hitting only three of its first 13 shots. That, along with 12 points from Harden, helped the Rockets carry a 46-42 lead into halftime.

Memphis opened the second half with a 12-2 run to take its largest lead of the game at that point. But the Rockets pulled back even, and Memphis held a 69-68 lead entering the final period.

The Rockets were within 76-75 when Memphis turned up the defensive intensity and began forcing turnovers. The pressure contributed to 11 unanswered points, including five from Wayne Ellington and four more from Marreese Speights.

When Quincy Pondexter forced another turnover on his fourth steal of the night, it led to a drive from Bayless and Memphis had built its biggest lead at 87-75.

But the Rockets had one more push left led by Lin's defence and layups. Lin scored seven of nine straight points for Houston and the Rockets were within 87-85 with 2:21 left.

Conley's 3-pointer, followed by the rebound basket by Gay, provided enough of a buffer for the Grizzlies.

NOTES: Houston has lost four straight in Memphis. ... Harden, who started the season with 37 and 45 points, respectively, has hit only 17 of his 57 shots over the last three games. ... The game featured two of the NBA's top three rebounders in Asik and Randolph. Asik had three offensive boards. Randolph, who leads the league in rebounding, grabbed five on the offensive glass.

Zach Randolph (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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