New Orleans at Memphis

CP3 blanked as Grizzlies tie Hornets for seventh seed

CBSSports.com wire reports
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Memphis Grizzlies aren't letting up even after clinching a spot in the playoffs. Instead, they continue inching up the Western Conference standings.

O.J. Mayo scored 18 points, Marc Gasol added 16 and the Grizzlies continued their march to the postseason with a 111-89 victory against the New Orleans Hornets on Sunday night.

Western Conference
SeedTeamGB
1o-Dallas-
2x-Denver-
3x-Golden State-
4x-Houston-
5y-L.A. Clippers-
6x-L.A. Lakers-
7x-Memphis-
8o-Minnesota-
Still alive
10z-Oklahoma City-
14y-San Antonio-
Eliminated
9o-New Orleans-
11o-Phoenix-
12o-Portland-
13o-Sacramento-
15o-Utah-
Complete Playoff Race >>

"We're still hungry. We're thirsty dogs," said reserve forward Darrell Arthur, who had eight points. "We're trying to go out there and win every game. We're not trying to just stop because we made the playoffs. It doesn't stop there. It stops when we lose in the playoffs."

Memphis limited New Orleans to 41 percent shooting and held All-Star guard Chris Paul scoreless for the first time in his career. Paul missed all six of his field goal attempts and a pair of free throws, but did hand out 10 assists.

"I just couldn't make nothing. There's a first time for everything," said Paul, who thought there was another scoreless game against Memphis previously. "I had some good looks, they just didn't go in."

Mike Conley, who guarded Paul most of the night, also was unaware it was the first time the Hornets guard failed to score in his six-year career.

"Not a lot of people can do it," Conley said of shutting down Paul. "When I was in there, my job was to make it tough on him and not let him get in the paint, create too many plays or get too many shots up."

Both teams have clinched playoff spots and are now jockeying for position. The victory pulled Memphis even with the Hornets for the seventh spot. The teams split the season series 2-2, but the Hornets own the second tiebreaker with a better record in the Southwest Division.

"Unfortunately, I think this was our emotional letdown game," Hornets coach Monty Williams said.

Sam Young and Zach Randolph scored 14 points apiece for Memphis, which won for the sixth time in seven games. Greivis Vasquez added a career-high 13 points, hitting all five of his shots. Randolph had six assists.

Marco Belinelli led the Hornets with 18 points, 16 of them in the first quarter. Trevor Ariza, Carl Landry and Willie Green added 11 each for New Orleans, which saw its three-game winning streak end.

Memphis continued its season-long trend of dominating inside with 56 points in the paint, compared to 28 for New Orleans. Memphis outrebounded the Hornets 41-34, although New Orleans did grab 11 offensive boards, leading to 19 second-chance points.

"They had close to 60 points in the paint. I think they had 30 at halftime," Williams said. "They got up to 70 percent shooting in the third quarter. That's embarrassing. There's no other way to put it."

Belinelli went 6 of 9 from the field in the first quarter, including 4 of 7 from beyond the arc, to help the Hornets shoot 52 percent in the period. But Memphis countered by going 13 of 16 in the first quarter to leave the game tied at 30 heading into the second.

The Grizzlies would maintain a strong shooting percentage, ending the half at 66 percent and carrying a 52-48 lead.

Randolph had 10 points for Memphis, which was stymied by 10 first-half turnovers, part of 15 Memphis miscues in the game.

More on Hornets at Grizzlies
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The Grizzlies opened the second half on a 17-8 run for a 69-56 lead, their biggest of the game at that point. Mayo's leaner with two seconds left in the third gave the Grizzlies an 82-67 lead as Memphis outscored New Orleans 30-19 in the period.

"They came up from the jump and knocked down shots," said Hornets guard Jarrett Jack, who scored 10 points. "I think that translated to energy on the defensive end."

Memphis then opened the fourth quarter with a 13-3 rally to push the lead to 95-70.

Neither team was willing to talk about possible playoff opponents.

"The only thing we can control is our wins and losses," Paul said. "We're one of those teams, we haven't been together long enough to say this is who we want to play, or who we don't want to play. We've just got to continue to play, deal with it as a team, and deal with who we have to play when we get to it."

Notes

  • A number of the Grizzlies' players and personnel had a different look Sunday. By clinching a playoff berth Friday with a victory against Sacramento, the vow not to shave until they reached the postseason was over. Several of the players and coaches modified their wooly look. Others got rid of the facial hair altogether. F Shane Battier shaved his off immediately after the victory Friday.
  • Memphis is 4-12 in home finales.
  • The Grizzlies' first-half shooting percentage was the best for the franchise since April 2, 2008, against the Knicks when they shot 68.2 percent.
  • Paul got a technical foul with 3:08 left in the third when he got upset about a plastic sports drink bottle ending up on the floor during play. He kept complaining to the officials about it until it drew the tech.
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O.J. Mayo comes off the bench for 18 points to lead the Grizzlies past the Hornets. (Getty Images)
O.J. Mayo comes off the bench for 18 points to lead the Grizzlies past the Hornets. (Getty Images)

Scoreboard
New Orleans (46-34)3018192289
Memphis (46-34) «30223029111
NO:M. Belinelli 18 Pts
NO:E. Okafor 7 Reb
NO:C. Paul 10 Ast
MEM:O. Mayo 18 Pts
MEM:M. Gasol 7 Reb
MEM:Z. Randolph 6 Ast
Players of the Game
New OrleansMemphis

Marco Belinelli

Zach Randolph
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
18231456
New Orleans
T. Ariza, SG355-110-044011
C. Paul, PG290-60-231010
E. Okafor, C283-61-37037
M. Belinelli, SG287-120-223318
C. Landry, PF204-83-321411
W. Green, SG204-91-211411
J. Jack, PG202-75-513010
J. Smith, PF194-60-03018
A. Gray, C151-60-05062
Q. Pondexter, SF131-31-22013
D. Mbenga, C72-31-23115
P. Ewing, SF60-33-41113
D. Andersen, CDid Not Play
M. Banks, PGDid Not Play
D. West, PFDid Not Play
Totals 33-8015-2534242589
 41.3%60.0% 
Memphis
M. Gasol, C295-76-672216
Z. Randolph, PF255-84-556314
M. Conley, PG251-50-03322
T. Allen, SG222-40-03114
S. Young, SF225-74-662114
O. Mayo, SG266-124-412218
G. Vasquez, PG235-51-315413
S. Battier, SF212-30-05105
H. Haddadi, C192-35-67139
D. Arthur, PF164-70-02228
L. Powe, PF72-50-30014
I. Smith, PG52-20-01104
J. Williams, PGDid Not Play
R. Gay, SFDid Not Play
X. Henry, SGDid Not Play
Totals 41-6824-33412621111
 60.3%72.7% 
Other Games
Chi 102 Final
Orl 99
Bos 77 Final
Mia 100
NJ 92 Final
Tor 99
Det 112 Final
Char 101
NY 110 Final
Ind 109
Pho 90 Final
Dal 115
Sac 104 Final
GS 103
OKC 120 Final
LAL 106