NBA Game Summary - Memphis at Orlando
(Saturday, December 4th)
Final Score: Orlando 96, Memphis 91
Orlando, FL (Sports Network) - Grant Hill netted 23 points and doled out seven assists to lead the Orlando Magic past the Memphis Grizzlies, 96-91, at the TD Waterhouse Centre.
Kelvin Cato collected 13 points and pulled down a career-high 18 rebounds to help the Magic to their fifth win in six games. Hedo Turkoglu chipped in 16 points off the bench while Steve Francis added 16 and eight helpers despite seven turnovers as Orlando snapped a four-game skid against Memphis.
"I thought a big reason for our success tonight was Kelvin Cato," said Magic coach Johnny Davis. "I thought he was just tremendous on the boards and just kept us steady on the interior."
Pau Gasol topped the Grizzlies with 20 points and new head coach Mike Fratello fell to 1-1 since joining the team Thursday. Reserves Stromile Swift and James Posey scored 16 and 15 points, respectively, while Earl Watson recorded a double-double with 12 points and 10 assists.
"We dug a hole so big in the first half," Fratello said. "We've got to work hard at these thing -- not digging ourselves that big a hole on the second night of these back-to-back games."
Memphis, which turned the ball over a season-high 23 times, faced an uphill battle after a 10-0 run by the Magic late in the first quarter made it 24-11.
Gasol's layup three minutes into the second cut the lead down to five, but Orlando outscored the Grizzlies 22-10 for the duration of the period to take a commanding 55-38 advantage heading into the break.
Cuttino Mobley, who had 10 points in the first half, hit from long range to hand Orlando its largest margin of the night at 55-36. Hill led all scorers with 14 points at halftime.
The double-digit deficit stayed intact until an 11-2 Memphis surge early in the final stanza. Watson and Posey accounted for all the scoring with Watson's three-pointer getting the Grizzlies within 85-77 midway through the fourth.
The difference was narrowed to six when another Gasol lay-in made it 91-85 with just under a minute remaining. A technical free throw after Francis was whistled for taunting trimmed it to five, but Francis kept his composure and knocked down two from the line to push the lead to 93-86 with 38 ticks left.
Memphis still had life thanks to another three by Watson with 14 seconds to go, but Orlando made enough free throws to thwart any chance of a comeback.
Memphis had dropped five straight before beating the 76ers in Fratello's debut Friday...Grizzlies point guard Jason Williams missed the game with a foot injury...Orlando's Tony Battie was ejected in the first quarter for a flagrant foul...Francis also had five steals while teammate and top overall pick Dwight Howard blocked four shots.
12/05 00:00:09 ET