Monday, January 06, 2014
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Grizzlies roll past Pistons

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[January 06, 2014]  AUBURN HILLS, Mich.  The Memphis Grizzlies stopped allowing second chances after halftime on Sunday afternoon. Once that happened, the Detroit Pistons failed to make shots.

Memphis outscored Detroit 61-28 during the second half and rolled to a 112-84 victory at The Palace. It was the Grizzlies' eighth consecutive win over the Pistons.

The Pistons, who lead the NBA in offensive rebounding percentage, scored 14 second-chance points in the first half while taking a five-point halftime lead but had none after the break. The Grizzlies limited them to 12-of-39 shooting with seven turnovers.

"They did a good job of offensive rebounding in the first half but we did a great job in the third quarter of not letting them get second and third opportunities," said Grizzlies small forward and longtime Piston Tayshaun Prince, who scored 15 points against his former club.


"Once we did that, we were able to score and we were also able to control them from a defensive standpoint. Their offensive rebounding fuels their energy and fast break and when you take that away, you put yourself in a position to play good help defense. We were able to do that in the third quarter and that was huge for us."

Memphis also got a strong boost from its bench, as its reserves outscored the Pistons backups 52-19. Forward Joe Leuer's career-high-tying 23 points and forward Ed Davis' 17 points and 11 rebounds led the bench brigade.

Leuer has seen his minutes increase with center Marc Gasol sidelined by a knee injury.

"He's just really reliable," Grizzlies coach David Joerger said of Leuer. "There were times where we didn't play him for two weeks last year and he came in and did his job. There were times he wasn't playing early in the season, he was getting DNPs. But the way this league works, he gets an opportunity and he ends up playing 25 or 30 minutes on different nights."

Power forward Zach Randolph powered for 16 points and 16 rebounds while point guard Mike Conley added 15 points for the Grizzlies (15-18).

Memphis also extended its winning streak at The Palace to six games. Detroit's last home victory over the Grizzlies was a 94-67 blowout on Dec. 21, 2007.


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Power forward Greg Monroe topped the Pistons (14-20), who have lost four straight, with 19 points and eight rebounds. Center Andre Drummond contributed 15 points and 14 rebounds for his Eastern Conference-leading 24th double-double. Rookie guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope chipped in 14 points and forward Josh Smith added 13 points and nine rebounds.

Coach Mo Cheeks blamed himself for his team's offensive collapse.

"I have to do a better job of trying to figure out how to get the ball from one side to the other," he said. "That's on me. That's not on them."

Memphis held Detroit to 11 third-quarter points and finished it with an 18-5 outburst while taking a double-digit lead. Conley made a 3-pointer and a baseline jumper midway through the third to give the Grizzlies a 71-64 advantage and his fast-break layup in the final minute made it 79-67.

"It hurt. It definitely hurt, playing the way we did in the second half," said Drummond, who did not play the last 7:43 of the quarter because of foul trouble. "All the hard work we put in these past few days, to let them come out and do what they did in the second half was definitely tough to swallow."

The Grizzlies extended the lead beyond 20 points during the first five minutes of the fourth.


NOTES: Memphis SG Tony Allen was a late scratch because of a left hand contusion. ... Detroit SF Kyle Singler reached the career 1,000-point mark during the second quarter. ... Pistons G Rodney Stuckey, who is averaging 14 points per game, missed his second consecutive game with a sore right shoulder. ... The Grizzlies were 7-12 entering the game without C Marc Gasol (left MCL sprain), who is out indefinitely. "We've had to make all kinds of adjustments," coach David Joerger said. "We ran a lot of our offense through him. He was our second playmaker behind (PG) Mike Conley. And he runs our defense. He's not just an anchor but more like a middle linebacker, directing traffic, telling everybody where to be and covering up for a lot of people's mistakes." ... Memphis plays six of its next games at home. The Grizzlies are 7-11 at FedEx Forum after losing just nine home games last season. ... Detroit begins a three-game road trip at New York's Madison Square Garden, where it has lost seven straight. ... Three players received technical fouls during the second half.

[ 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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