Memphis, TN – Tayshaun Prince looked pretty comfortable in his Memphis debut, making several clutch shots down the stretch to help the Grizzlies down the Washington Wizards, 85-76, at FedExForum on Friday.
Prince received the most playing time of the three new players acquired in Wednesday's trade, in which the Grizzlies shipped Rudy Gay to the Toronto Raptors. In 32 minutes of play, Prince scored 14 points on 7-of-11 shooting, while Ed Davis and Austin Daye saw limited action in their respective debuts.
"It was tough, but they tried to keep it as simple as possible for the first game and we were able to manage it real well," Prince said about his first game with his new team.
Mike Conley scored a team-high 18 points and Marc Gasol contributed 13 points and 15 rebounds for Memphis, which bounced back after a loss to Oklahoma City on Thursday.
Nene was Washington's only scorer in double-figures, tallying 14 points. John Wall contributed nine points along with seven rebounds and six assists in the Wizards' third straight defeat.
"They just executed their offense and we just missed a couple of open, easy shots," Wall said about Memphis. "They did a great job of making shots."
Neither team shot very well in the first half, but Washington held a slim 40-39 edge at the break. However, Memphis started to find its rhythm midway through the third quarter.
They shot 6-for-10 in the final six-plus minutes of period, with Darrell Arthur's jumper sending the Grizzlies into the fourth with a 61-56 lead.
Memphis never trailed in the final session, and while Trevor Ariza knocked down a triple early in the fourth to pull Washington within 67-66, Prince made key baskets down the stretch to keep the Grizzlies ahead.
He scored eight of his points in the fourth, finishing a driving score to push the Grizzlies' lead to five and then increased the cushion to eight later in the stanza with a desperation 21-footer.
Prince sealed the victory with another jumper with just over a minute remaining to give Memphis an 82-72 advantage. Washington never came closer than six the rest of the way.
Memphis captured its ninth consecutive home win over Washington ... The Wizards haven't won at FedExForum since Nov. 3, 2004 ... Bradley Beal sat for a second consecutive game for Washington with an injured wrist ... Zach Randolph tallied seven points and 11 rebounds for Memphis.