The Memphis Grizzlies barely escaped with a victory last point lead, and now look to extend their winning streak to four games when the Golden State Warriors take a walk down Beale Street tonight in a matchup at FedEx Forum.
The Grizzlies broke down towards the end of the third quarter in Friday's 103-102 victory over the Nuggets and needed Dante Cunningham's last-second tip-in to push their winning streak to three games -- the longest since a seven-game run from Jan. 12-23 this season. Cunningham's put-back off a Rudy Gay miss with 0.2 seconds remaining was the final difference.
"You have to go for it," Cunningham told the team's website. "You get an offensive foul going for a rebound at the end of the game with less than five seconds left, it really doesn't matter. You're going to lose anyway. You might as well give it your all and go for it."
Rudy Gay and O.J. Mayo finished with 20 and 17 points, respectively, while Marc Gasol added 16 points and 14 rebounds for Memphis, which has won 11 of 16 games at home this season and improved to 7-0 when scoring 100-plus points. Mike Conley also scored 16 points in the exciting win.
Memphis, which has won five of its last six contests, is the best team at holding opponents under 100 points (26 games). The only teams to score 100 against Memphis this season are Oklahoma City (twice), Chicago, New Jersey and Denver. Gasol is averaging 16.0 ppg in his last seven.
Golden State hopes leading scorer Monta Ellis will be in the lineup tonight after he left Friday's 110-87 loss at Oklahoma City with a knee injury. He scored 11 points and was able to run outside of the Golden State locker room.
David Lee led the Warriors with 23 points and six rebounds, and Dorell Wright, Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson all netted 11 points for the Warriors, who have lost two in a row since a three-game winning streak and are 3-4 over the previous seven contests.
"Other than the second quarter, I thought we did a good job," Warriors coach Mark Jackson said. "Giving up 38 points in a quarter...it's a recipe for disaster. That hurt us."
The Warriors are currently playing eight of nine games on the road and own a 3-7 mark outside of Oakland this season. They are 6-11 against the Western Conference this season and 6-6 in a stretch of 15 straight games against the West. Wright entered the game averaging 13.8 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2.3 assists in his past nine games. Curry had averages of 17.6 points, 4.4 rebounds, 8.0 assists and 2.00 steals in seven games before Friday.
After tonight's game Golden State will return home to host the LA Clippers before kicking off a six-game road trip.
Golden State dropped a 91-90 decision versus Memphis on Jan. 23 this season, as Gay scored 23 points to help the Grizzlies erase an 18-point hole in the fourth quarter. Ellis logged 20 points in that one for the Warriors, who have lost three straight and eight of 11 in this series.
The Warriors are winless in five straight and 10 of 13 trips to Memphis.