The young Phoenix Suns were game and put this contest in doubt at first, but Memphis dominated the second half behind massive performances from their stars, winning at home 130-112.
The first quarter was more about what happened after the whistle than between whistles.
After the Troy Daniels-Devin Booker beef from the last time these two teams met, the fact that tempers boiled over isn’t overly surprising. But to lose the elder statesman of the Grizzlies Vince Carter was a surprise - he lost his cool relatively quickly, which is uncharacteristic for Vince. He was surely missed by Memphis, who depends on his veteran presence.
The opening half was a tale of Mike Conley and Marc Gasol domination. Marc and Mike kept their great play against Denver going in the first two quarters, combining for 27 points on 20 shots and 3-5 shooting from three. Zach Randolph also had 9 points off the Grizzlies bench, but the Suns had the lead at the end of the first half, 56-55. Phoenix shot 56.1% from the field, far too successful, with six players scoring at least six points for the Suns.
The second half was more of the same. Conley and Gasol combined to score 13 points in the first four and a half minutes of the half as the Grizzlies gained the lead in the third quarter. T.J. Warren, Eric Bledsoe, Alan Williams, and the Suns kept it close, but the Memphis offense was far too high powered on this night. Zach Randolph had another monster game off the bench, and behind the three key Grizzlies Gasol (28 points), Conley (29 points), and Randolph (23 points), Memphis picked up a good win in FedExForum over Phoenix.
The Grizzlies return to action Friday night against the Dallas Mavericks as they start a weekend Texas back-to-back.