MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Portland Trail Blazers are already as good a road team this season as they were in all of 2005-06.
Zach Randolph scored 21 points to lead the Trail Blazers to an 85-79 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday night, their sixth road win of the season, matching their total away from the Rose Garden last season.
Randolph grabbed 11 rebounds for Portland, which ended a six-game road trip -- its longest of the season -- with three consecutive wins.
"We're together now," Randolph said. "We understand what we have to do to win road games. We have to play the whole 48 (minutes). We've got to scrap and get defensive stops."
But the Trail Blazers had to overcome a fourth-quarter Memphis rally to get the latest win. Randolph connected on three free throws down the stretch, his only points in the fourth quarter, to help preserve the victory.
Memphis, which trailed by as many as 21 points, overtook Portland with 1:15 remaining when Alexander Johnson made two free throws to cap an 8-0 run that gave the Grizzlies a 79-78 lead.
But Ime Udoka's 20-foot jumper with a minute left gave Portland the lead for good.
Udoka finished with a career-high 15 points for the Trail Blazers, while Jarrett Jack and Juan Dixon both scored 11.
"We didn't execute and didn't get defensive stops," Jack said. "Sometimes you don't execute, but you still keep it up on defense. But we didn't do that, and they got back in it."
Another factor down the stretch was Travis Outlaw recording three of his four blocks in the game over a 40-second span. But Memphis coach Mike Fratello questioned the last one on Damon Stoudamire with 36 seconds left.
"I'll let you be the judge on the shot at the end, whether or not it was goaltending," Fratello said. "I think there should be a way to fix those calls. The replay is a great tool. We have such good technology, and it's a shame we don't use it."
Mike Miller led Memphis with 20 points, while Stoudamire scored 15, Chucky Atkins 14 and Rudy Gay 12.
Memphis had benefited early in the fourth quarter when Randolph was on the bench with foul trouble. That allowed the Grizzlies to get within four points on several occasions.
Things were ragged for Memphis almost from the start as the Grizzlies were shooting 25 percent early and Portland was building a 13-point lead by shooting 59 percent in the first quarter.
At one point, the Grizzlies called two timeouts late in the first period after getting trapped in the backcourt then failing to get the ball inbounds. They came out of the second timeout with a play that led to an interception at midcourt which Portland converted into an alley-oop dunk by Outlaw.
Meanwhile, Memphis' Hakim Warrick rattled two tomahawk dunk attempts off the rim for misses.
Randolph had his double-double in the second quarter as the Trail Blazers weathered a 12-2 run by Memphis and rebuilt the lead to 21 points before taking a 48-35 halftime lead.
The Trail Blazers held a 64-57 lead entering the final period.
Portland coach Nate McMillan said his team became a bit complacent with a big lead and got out of their rhythm. But he noted that it was another road win and another step toward improvement over last season. It was a nice way to head back home.
"I'm certainly going to play off this road trip and the things we're doing on the road, about how we played and things we showed on the court," McMillan said. "I'm going to use this trip for direction in the future."
NBA commissioner David Stern met with the media before the game and discussed a range of topics from the return to leather basketballs to the future of the Grizzlies' ownership. ... Grizzlies All-Star F Pau Gasol remained on the inactive list, but his return appears imminent. The 7-footer has increased practice time, and while Fratello said it's a day-to-day evaluation, Gasol could return for Friday's home game against Atlanta or on Saturday at Miami. ... Grizzlies F Stromile Swift left the game in the fourth quarter with a sprained left ankle and did not return. ... Randolph has 14 double-doubles this season. ... Portland leads the overall series 12-11. Memphis had entered the game winning six of the last seven home games in the series. ... Miller surpassed 6,000 points in his career in the third quarter. ... The 21-point deficit marked the eighth time this season Memphis has trailed by 20 points or more, including three of the last four. The Grizzlies are winless in all eight games.
|Portland (10-14) «||27||21||16||21||85|
|POR:Z. Randolph 21 Pts
POR:Z. Randolph 11 Reb
POR:J. Jack 6 Ast
|MEM:M. Miller 20 Pts
MEM:A. Johnson 7 Reb
MEM:C. Atkins 5 Ast
|Players of the Game|
|J. Jack, PG||40||4-9||3-4||3||6||2||11|
|I. Udoka, SF||39||6-9||1-2||2||1||4||15|
|Z. Randolph, PF||33||6-16||9-10||11||3||5||21|
|J. Przybilla, C||22||2-2||0-0||6||1||2||4|
|M. Webster, SG||16||1-3||1-2||3||2||1||3|
|J. Dixon, SG||32||5-12||0-0||3||3||0||11|
|J. Magloire, C||25||3-5||3-5||7||1||4||9|
|T. Outlaw, PF||16||3-6||2-2||3||0||2||8|
|D. Dickau, PG||5||0-0||0-0||0||0||1||0|
|R. LaFrentz, PF||4||0-1||0-0||1||0||0||0|
|L. Aldridge, C||4||0-1||0-0||0||0||1||0|
|S. Rodriguez, PG||3||1-1||0-0||2||0||0||3|
|D. Miles, SF||Did Not Play|
|S. Graham, SG||Did Not Play|
|B. Roy, SG||Did Not Play|
|Complete Box Score|
|M. Miller, SF||39||8-16||1-1||5||4||2||20|
|D. Stoudamire, PG||36||6-13||1-2||5||2||0||15|
|S. Swift, C||31||3-9||1-2||4||2||2||7|
|D. Jones, SG||20||1-4||0-0||0||1||2||2|
|H. Warrick, PF||19||1-6||1-2||3||0||1||3|
|C. Atkins, PG||28||6-10||0-0||2||5||4||14|
|R. Gay, SG||25||6-13||0-1||3||2||2||12|
|A. Johnson, PF||19||1-2||4-4||7||1||6||6|
|J. Tsakalidis, C||10||0-0||0-0||1||1||3||0|
|B. Cardinal, PF||7||0-0||0-0||1||0||2||0|
|E. Jones, SG||6||0-1||0-0||0||0||1||0|
|P. Gasol, PF||Did Not Play|
|L. Roberts, PF||Did Not Play|
|K. Lowry, PG||Did Not Play|
|T. Kinsey, SG||Did Not Play|
|Complete Box Score|