National Basketball Association
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                      === Grizzlies slip past Thunder ===
 Memphis,  TN  (SportsNetwork.com)  -  Courtney Lee  scored  a  season-high  24
 points  and  Zach Randolph  recorded  a  double-double  of  23 points  and  13
 rebounds  to lead  the Memphis  Grizzlies  to a  90-87 win  over the  Oklahoma
 City Thunder from FedEx Forum.
 Mike  Conley finished  with 19 points and seven assists for Memphis, which has
 won  three  straight games.  Marc  Gasol  returned  to the  Grizzlies'  lineup
 after  a 23-game absence  because of an MCL sprain and finished with 12 points
 and four rebounds in the win.
 "I  got  the goose bumps  for about  a minute, or  two minutes," Gasol said of
 returning  to the  floor. "I felt like  I was a rookie again, even better than
 that. Today was a special day for me, but we move on."
 Kevin  Durant poured  in 37  points for  Oklahoma City,  which has  lost three
 straight  on  the road. Reggie Jackson  added 17 points and Serge Ibaka scored
 11 points with nine rebounds and four blocks in the setback.
 After Jackson opened the third quarter with a 3-pointer, the Grizzlies went on
 a  15-3 run  to take a 58-53  lead. Conley scored the first five points during
 the  run  and Randolph capped  it with  a pair at  the line midway through the
 Lee  hit a deep 2-pointer, originally ruled as a three, as time expired in the
 quarter as Memphis led 72-67 heading into the fourth.
 A  quick 6-0 sprint  got the Thunder within one at 74-73, but Conley countered
 with a 3-pointer to push the lead to four with just over eight minutes left in
 the game.
 The lead was six in favor of Memphis when Durant pulled up on the baseline and
 knocked  down  a 12-foot  jumper, then  buried a  top-of-the-key jumper on the
 following possession to make it an 86-84 game with 1:53 left.
 Randolph  split  a pair  at the  line to increase  the margin  and Gasol had a
 chance  to  put the  game away,  but his  wide-open hook  shot from inside was
 short,  leaving  the door  ajar for  Oklahoma City  to tie  the game with time
 winding down.
 Durant  drove and  kicked it to the  far corner to Ibaka, who missed a 3-point
 try for the tie and Randolph pulled down the board with 11.6 seconds left.
 Randolph  was  fouled and made  1-of-2 to make it  an 88-84 contest, but Ibaka
 answered at the other end with a three.
 Lee  calmly knocked down  a pair from the line with 1.3 seconds left, however,
 as the Grizzlies hung on for the win.
 Lee  buried  back-to-back threes to  ignite a 14-2  burst in the first quarter
 which put the Grizzlies up 18-7 at the 5:06 mark.
 "We  didn't do a good job of starting the game off on him," Thunder head coach
 Scott  Brooks said  of his  team's defense  on Lee.  "Throughout the  game, he
 sprinkled in some big shots. We can't afford for that to happen."
 Durant  answered  with  five  straight points,  but  the  Grizzlies  countered
 the  flurry  with a  6-0 sprint.  Lee scored  the final  four points, the last
 of  which  came on  a tip-in off  his own  miss to give  the Grizzlies a 24-12
 The Thunder closed to within eight, 24-16, at the end of the first quarter.
 Oklahoma  City went on  an 11-1 run over the first four minutes of the second,
 with Jackson contributing seven points during the spurt to help the Thunder to
 a 27-25 lead.
 Gasol  ended the  drought  for  Memphis, making  his  first  field goal  since
 returning to the lineup to knot the game.
 Oklahoma  City opened up  a six-point lead late in the half, but Conley made a
 driving  layup with 0.7  seconds left in the half to pull Memphis within 47-43
 at the break.
                                   Game Notes
 Grizzlies guard Tony Allen missed his fifth straight game with a sprained left
 wrist  ...  Memphis was 4-of-14  (28.6 percent) from  beyond the arc, with Lee
 finishing  2-of-3 from  long distance ... Memphis owned a 42-40 edge in points
 in  the paint ... Oklahoma City's bench outscored Memphis' reserves by a 20-10
 01/15 00:56:10 ET

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