Grizzlies top Nuggets
Memphis, TN (Sports Network) - Rudy Gay had 19 points in his return to the lineup, lifting the Memphis Grizzlies over the Denver Nuggets, 81-72, on Saturday.
Gay, who also pulled down six rebounds, missed Wednesday's game against Philadelphia due to personal reasons.
Zach Randolph added 12 points and seven rebounds for the Grizzlies, who improved to 13-3 at home this season.
JaVale McGee, Corey Brewer and Andre Iguodala had 12 points apiece for the Nuggets, who had a two-game winning streak snapped. Kenneth Faried tallied 11 points.
With the score tied at 68 late in the fourth, Gay scored eight points during a 10-0 Memphis run. His bank shot with 1:25 to play gave the Grizzlies a 10- point margin.
Wayne Ellington added a 3-pointer with 23 seconds left to make it an 81-70 contest.
The Grizzlies led for the duration of the first quarter and took a 19-15 edge into the second stanza.
A personal 6-0 run by Gay had Memphis in front by seven, 35-28, with 3:52 to go.
However, Denver responded with an 8-0 spurt to take a 36-35 lead. Jerryd Bayless stopped the flurry with a jumper to give the Grizzlies a 37-36 edge at the half.
A tight third quarter featured six lead changes and five ties. The Nuggets scored the final six points of the period to take a 57-53 lead into the fourth.
Denver fell to 2-1 against Memphis this season ... Memphis' Quincy Pondexter was carried off the court with a left knee injury late in the third quarter. He did not return ... Denver turned the ball over 17 times, leading to 30 Memphis points.
12/29 23:09:31 ET