x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

Composed San Antonio Spurs, on game-winner from Manu Ginobili, avoid collapse in Memphis

Despite blowing a 16-point lead in the final five minutes of regulation, the Spurs went to overtime with the Grizzlies and pulled out a 110-108 win on Tuesday night.

Manu Ginobili scored nine points for San Antonio on Tuesday. Brendan Maloney / AP
Manu Ginobili scored nine points for San Antonio on Tuesday. Brendan Maloney / AP

MEMPHIS, United States // The San Antonio Spurs had reason to be disappointed. They had lost a 16-point lead in the game’s final five minutes and were being forced to play overtime Tuesday night against the Memphis Grizzlies.

Instead of losing their composure, the Spurs displayed poise as they battled through the five-minute overtime period and beat the Grizzlies, 110-108, winning on a driving layup by Manu Ginobili with 1.8 seconds left.

Memphis point guard Mike Conley had an opportunity to win the game, but his 29-foot three-point attempt fell short at the buzzer.

“I told the guys at the (beginning of) overtime that it was all a mental contest,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. “It would be easy to go down after losing the lead and playing as sloppily as we did at the end of the game. It would be easy to hang your head. So I thought that was the most important thing: letting go and moving forward mentally.”

Tim Duncan led the Spurs with 24 points – including six in overtime – while Marco Belinelli added 19 and Kawhi Leonard 17. Conley had 30 points, one off his career high, for the Grizzlies, scoring 21 in the second half.

“(The Grizzlies) had some great plays down the stretch there,” Duncan said. “We thought there was a couple of fouls missed (but) they played horn to horn and we didn’t. We slacked off there for a minute, but luckily not enough to be able to regroup in overtime and find a way to win.”

Memphis trailed by 16 with five minutes left in regulation, and used a 23-7 run to rally and force overtime. Conley hit a runner at the end of regulation to send the game into overtime 3 seconds after Ginobili had scored on a layup.

“I was proud of the effort at the end,” said Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger. “We kept coming. We started to attack them the way we needed to attack them, which was in transition and with quick attacks. I thought we played pretty hard. We were just too slow in the first half.”

With the Grizzlies trailing by 10, Conley said he decided to play more aggressively entering the fourth quarter to relieve the pressure on teammate Zach Randolph, whom the Spurs were double-teaming in the low post. Conley scored 12 points in the quarter, including 9 in the final 1:35 when the Grizzlies rallied from a 96-85 deficit. He added five more points in overtime.

“On the last play of the game I would have liked to have gotten it closer to the (three-point) line,” Conley said. “But I had a good look.”

The Spurs won their fourth straight road game and their seventh straight against the Grizzlies. San Antonio were playing their first game without centre Tiago Splitter, who sprained his right shoulder in Saturday’s win over the Clippers and is out for three to five weeks.

Memphis never led in the game until Conley connected on a three-pointer with 2:25 to go in overtime for a 103-102 advantage. The Grizzlies also led 106-104 after newly acquired guard Courtney Lee hit a jumper with 1:27 to go, but Boris Diaw scored on a layup 25 seconds later and Duncan hit two free throws with 22.6 seconds left for a 108-106 lead.

The Grizzlies dropped to 0-9 against Southwest Division opponents.

The Spurs shot 57 percent in the first half and built a 53-41 lead. San Antonio were 23-of-40 shooting and Belinelli had 14 points. Duncan was 5-of-7 and scored 11 points.

The Spurs led by as many as 14 in the opening half.

Leading 25-22 at the end of the first quarter, the Spurs extended their advantage to 14 at 47-33 late in the second quarter and maintained a double-digit lead until the second half.

In the third quarter, the Grizzlies trimmed San Antonio’s lead to 62-57 on a jumper by Conley, but the Spurs led by 10 entering the final quarter.

OTHER TUESDAY RESULTS

Jazz 112, Thunder 101

Gordon Hayward scored 17 of his career-high 37 points in the fourth quarter to lead the Utah Jazz (12-25) to a surprise win over the Oklahoma City Thunder (27-8).

Hayward also grabbed 11 rebounds and dished out seven assists to overshadow a strong performance from Kevin Durant and help the Jazz to their best biggest win of a rough season.

Durant scored 48 points for Oklahoma City, who played without starters Russell Westbrook (knee) and Serge Ibaka (illness).

Heat 107, Pelicans 88

LeBron James scored 16 of his 32 points in the third quarter to lead the Miami Heat (27-8) past the New Orleans Pelicans (15-18).

Heat guard Dwyane Wade added 22 points, eight rebounds and eight assists as Miami outscored the visitors 32-18 in the final quarter.

The Pelicans were led by forward Anthony Davis, who had 22 points, 12 rebounds, two blocks and three steals.

Warriors 101, Bucks 80

David Lee scored 22 points and grabbed 18 rebounds as the Golden State Warriors (24-13) extended their winning streak to 10 games.

Warriors center Andrew Bogut had eight points, 11 rebounds and a blocked shot against league-worst Milwaukee (7-27), where he spent his first seven NBA seasons.

Pacers 86, Raptors 79

Roy Hibbert scored 22 points and added three blocked shots and eight rebounds to lead the Indiana Pacers (28-6) to a victory over the Toronto Raptors (16-17).

With the Pacers’ swingman Paul George sitting with two early fouls, Indiana went on an 18-4 run to take control of the game after the first quarter.

DeMar DeRozan led the Raptors with 28 points and six assists.

Mavericks 110, Lakers 97

Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki scored a game-high 27 points and Vince Carter racked up 19 points off the bench for Dallas (20-15) in their victory over the Los Angeles Lakers (14-21).

The Lakers continue to struggle without injured guards Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash. Los Angeles have lost eight of their last nine games.

Bulls 92, Suns 87

Taj Gibson led Chicago with 19 points, Joakim Noah added 14 points, 16 rebounds and six assists and the Chicago Bulls (15-18) nearly held Phoenix (20-13) to their lowest point total of the season.

In their first game since trading all-star Luol Deng, Chicago held off the Suns late as a three-pointer by guard Kirk Hinrich gave them an 88-81 lead with 2:01 remaining.

Goran Dragic scored 21 points for the Suns who scored with 4.4 seconds left to surpass their previous season low of 86 points, set against Golden State on December 27.

Knicks 89, Pistons 85

Carmelo Anthony scored a game-high 34 points as the New York Knicks (12-22) accounted for the Detroit Pistons (14-21).

Detroit’s Andre Drummond scored 12 points and grabbed 17 rebounds while Josh Smith added 21 points and 12 rebounds for the Pistons.

Cavaliers 111, 76ers 93

CJ Miles made a franchise-record 10 three-pointers during a 34-point performance in the Cleveland Cavaliers’ victory over the Philadelphia 76ers.

The NBA record for three-pointers in a game is 12 by the Toronto Raptors’ Donyell Marshall and the Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant.

Newly acquired forward Luol Deng did not suit up for the Cavs (12-23), who shook off a career-high 33 points by Philadelphia (12-23) guard Michael Carter-Williams.

Wizards 97, Bobcats 83

Bradley Beal scored 21 points, and Marcin Gortat had 18 points and 13 rebounds as the Washington Wizards (15-17) beat the Charlotte Bobcats (15-21).

The Wizards broke the game open with a 17-0 run early in the third quarter.

Nuggets 129, Celtics 98

Randy Foye had a season-high 23 points and forward Kenneth Faried had 21 points and 13 rebounds to help the Denver Nuggets 917-17) rout the Boston Celtics (13-22).

Guard Ty Lawson had 19 points and 13 assists for Denver.

Jeff Green had 17 points and forward Brandon Bass added 15 for the Celtics, who have lost five straight and eight of nine.

Kings 123, Trail Blazers 119

Damian Lillard’s 41 points on 13-of-24 shooting weren’t to help Portland (26-9) avoid a disappointing defeat to Sacramento (11-22).

The Blazers established an 11-point first-quarter lead, but saw it turn into a seven-point deficit by the start of the fourth quarter – one they couldn’t overcome.

Lillard added seven rebounds and four assists in the loss, with Nicolas Batum supplying 11 points, 11 rebounds and five assists as well.

DeMarcus Cousins led the Kings with 35 points and 13 rebounds, Rudy Gay scored another 32 and Isaiah Thomas pitched in 22 points, seven rebounds and eight assists in the win.

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