NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, December 7th (All times Eastern)
Memphis Grizzlies (13-3) at New Orleans Hornets (5-12), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Memphis Grizzlies, owners of the best winning percentage in the NBA, invade the Big Easy Friday night for a matchup with the New Orleans Hornets.
Memphis has won four of its last five outings and rebounded from an overtime loss on Saturday in San Antonio to the Spurs with an overtime victory at home over the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday.
The Grizzlies outscored the Suns 14-4 in the extra session to get the victory.
Zach Randolph was a beast on Tuesday. He scored 38 points, which was his high mark as a member of the Grizzlies, and grabbed 22 rebounds, including 15 on the defensive glass. Randolph shot an efficient 15-for-22 in just over 44 minutes to will his side to the win.
"He reminded me of two years ago Zach," said Grizzlies center Marc Gasol. "He had the little bounce. He doesn't get high (off the ground), but you could see it in his eyes. He had the eyebrow and all that going. It was good. He was aggressive. He wasn't settling as much as he's been in the past."
"That's just me," said Randolph. "When I got that little hop in my step, it means I'm going. He knows me and he knows when I'm going."
The Grizzlies rank third in the NBA in opponents' scoring and sixth in opponents' field-goal percentage.
Those numbers might equate to a rough outing for the Hornets, who may become the Pelicans next season. The Hornets are the 26th-worst offensive team and 17th-worst shooting team.
The Hornets have lost three of their last four, including a 103-87 thrashing at the hands of the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday. Friday night ends a five- game homestand that has netted one win, a 102-81 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday.
Still without No. 1 overall pick Anthony Davis (left ankle injury) and Eric Gordon (knee problem), the Hornets led the Lakers at the half. They dropped the third quarter by 14 and only managed 39 points in the second half.
"We have had a little bit of trouble with that this year, and it's something that we will need to tighten up on and come together as a group," said Ryan Anderson of his team's bad play to start the second half.
Anderson was his great usual self with 31 points and nine rebounds. He shot 5- for-8 from the 3-point line and leads the NBA in 3-pointers made with an average of 3.4 per contest.
Robin Lopez posted his fourth straight game of double-figure scoring and Greivis Vasquez had 16 points and nine assists.
The Grizzlies have won five of the last six meetings with the Hornets, but are 3-11 in their last 14 in the Big Easy.
12/07 10:46:35 ET