Marc Gasol came up big on the clutch and the entire game Tuesday night to lead the Memphis Grizzlies past the struggling New Orleans Pelicans, 113-104. Gasol scored a season-high 38 points including key baskets late in the game when the Pelicans tried to rally in the end game.
The Spanish center was efficient from the field at 11-of-22 for the night and was also a perfect 16-of-16 from the free throw line. He also added 13 rebounds, 6 assists and 4 blocked shots for the Grizzlies, who has now won four of the last five games.
The Pelicans started the game well and held a 38-27 lead after the first quarter. Led by Gasol, the Grizzlies climbed back in the second quarter and trailed by just a single point, 65-64 at the halftime break.
The game was tied at 80-all with 2:57 to go in the third quarter but the veteran Memphis squad ended the quarter on an 11-5 run to grab the lead entering the fourth quarter.
The Grizzlies showed their composure and the Pelicans never seriously threatened in the final quarter. Memphis outrebounded New Orleans, 49-37 and also took advantage of their trips to the line making 25-of-26 free throws for the night.
Five other Grizzlies ended up in double-figure scoring led by Zach Randolph’s 14 points. Off the bench, Matt Barnes and Courtney Lee added 13 points apiece.
Anthony Davis had a near triple-double with 17 points, 14 rebounds and 9 blocked shots but the Pelicans’ franchise player missed 11-of-15 shots from the field. Tyreke Evans had a team-high 20 points and 10 assists.
Memphis returns home for their next three games including match-ups against West rivals San Antonio Spurs on Thursday and Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday. The Pelicans continue their struggle this season and dropped to a 4-14 win-loss record.
New Orleans will take on the equally-struggling Houston Rockets Wednesday.