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Lopez, Johnson lead Nets past Memphis
Memphis, TN (SportsNetwork.com) - Brook Lopez took over in the fourth quarter and the Brooklyn Nets picked up a 97-88 road win over the Memphis Grizzlies.
Lopez, in his second game since returning from an ankle injury, scored 12 of his 20 points in the last quarter and added nine rebounds to seal Brooklyn's second win in its last nine games.
Joe Johnson and Andray Blatche did most of the damage early and finished with 26 and 21 points, respectively, in the victory.
"I just wanted to come out and be aggressive on both ends of the floor and bring that energy and effort that coach said we didn't have last night," Johnson said.
Quincy Pondexter exploded for 20 of his 22 points in the final 13 minutes, but it wasn't enough to rally the Grizzlies from a 15-point deficit.
"I just hate for our team to lose. It would have felt better if we got the win," Pondexter said.
Mike Conley donated 16 points and 10 assists in the loss, Memphis' third in the last four games.
Johnson capped his 16-point first quarter with a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to give the Nets a 24-19 lead, which ballooned to 15 in the second quarter and was a healthy 48-37 at the break.
Memphis mounted a comeback in the third, and Pondexter went on a personal 11-0 run that bled into the fourth quarter to pull the Grizzlies within 73-71.
Pondexter's 3-pointer with under 10 minutes remaining cut the deficit to 75-74, but Brooklyn scored 11 of the next 13 points to pull away for good.
Lopez added two hook shots and a free throw a little later for a 91-78 cushion, and the Nets closed it out from there.
Grizzlies forward Zach Randolph sat out with an ingrown toenail ... Memphis has lost four in a row at home ... The Nets were 0-3 on the second game of a back-to-back ... Brooklyn outscored the Grizzlies at the free throw line 20-9.
12/01 03:38:55 ET