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Morant, Brooks lead Grizzlies to 121-110 win over Rockets

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Early this season, the young Memphis Grizzlies were still learning how to close out games - a shortfall the team has overcome during its longest winning streak in more than three years.

The Grizzlies outscored the Houston Rockets 36-27 in the fourth quarter Tuesday night as Memphis pulled away for a 121-110 victory, stretching the Grizzlies' winning streak to six games - their longest since December 2016.

Rookie guard Ja Morant had 26 points and eight assists, and Dillon Brooks scored 24 to lead Memphis. Jonas Valanciunas added 19 points and Jaren Jackson Jr. had 15 despite going 6 of 16 from the floor.

Morant missed only one of his 11 shots, becoming the first rookie in NBA history to score at least 25 points while handing out eight or more assists and shooting 90% or better from the field.

''Early on, we would get stagnant, and we would run the same thing over and over,'' Brooks said of the team's fourth-quarter problems earlier in the season. ''Now, we're getting more diversity with Ja getting to the middle and making great plays and great decisions.''

Brooks also was responsible for guarding Rockets star James Harden, the NBA's leading scorer. Harden perhaps had more scoring duties against Memphis as backcourt mate Russell Westbrook sat out to rest on the opening night of a back-to-back. Harden scored 41 points, his fifth straight game against the Grizzlies surpassing 40. But he shot 13 of 37, including 5 of 19 from 3-point range.

That included missing all seven shots in the fourth quarter as Memphis pulled away in the final eight minutes.

''There were little things,'' Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni said. ''Most importantly, we couldn't keep the Grizzlies in front of us. They finished very well at the rim on a lot of fast-break possessions. . We didn't do enough to stop them.''

Eric Gordon finished with 23 points for Houston, and Clint Capela had 16 points and 16 rebounds.

Capela said in games the Rockets have lost ''finishing defensively, we weren't good enough. Our goal is always to keep the team under 100 points, which didn't happen.''

The teams were tied at 95 with about eight minutes left when the Grizzlies went on an 11-1 run fueled by 3-pointers from Solomon Hill, Brooks and Morant. That gave Memphis a 106-96 lead with five minutes remaining.

The win left the Grizzlies clinging to eighth place in the Western Conference, a half-game ahead of the idle San Antonio Spurs.

''Every game is a statement game at this point,'' Jackson said, ''because you are playing for seeding, playing for the playoffs. Everybody is trying to work towards that, but definitely, when you're on a winning streak, it gives you a bit more energy.''

TIP-INS

Rockets: Westbrook also sat out Houston's previous game at Memphis on Nov. 4, which was the second of a back-to-back. . With Westbrook out, Austin Rivers started at guard alongside Harden. Rivers was given the nod over Gordon. ''Someone has to chase Morant around, and I want Austin to do that,'' D'Antoni said before the game. ''Help save Eric's legs a little bit.'' ... Capela has at least 10 rebounds in 25 of the past 26 games. ... The loss left D'Antoni one win short of 200 as coach of the Rockets. ... It was only the second time Houston has lost in 16 games when Harden scored at least 40 points this season.

Grizzlies: F Jae Crowder sat out with right hip soreness. Kyle Anderson started in his place, his third start of the season. . Jackson has 13 straight games with multiple 3-pointers, tying Mike Miller for the franchise record. . Memphis has scored at least 110 points in 12 consecutive games, the longest active streak in the NBA.

GORDON MAKING PROGRESS

Gordon's 23 points were a season high after the Rockets guard missed 22 games following right knee arthroscopy. He also sat out last Thursday's loss at Oklahoma City with right knee soreness.

''It's coming together,'' Gordon said. ''I want to continue to get better and better. . It's going to take some time. I'm getting better, the knee is getting better and I just have to get in some better shape.''

UP NEXT

Rockets: Open a four-game homestand against Portland on Wednesday.

Grizzlies: Host the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday.

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1st Quarter

Time Team Play Score
12:00   Jumpball  
11:35   Jaren Jackson Jr. missed turnaround jump shot, blocked by James Harden  
11:31   Defensive rebound by Clint Capela  
11:29   Ben McLemore missed 3-pt. jump shot  
11:26   Defensive rebound by Kyle Anderson  
11:23   Shooting foul on P.J. Tucker  
11:23 +1 Ja Morant made 1st of 2 free throws 0-1
11:23 +1 Ja Morant made 2nd of 2 free throws 0-2
11:09 +2 James Harden made jump shot, assist by Clint Capela 2-2
10:44 +2 Ja Morant made driving layup 2-4
10:31   Clint Capela missed layup, blocked by Jonas Valanciunas  
10:28   Defensive rebound by Dillon Brooks  
10:25   Jaren Jackson Jr. missed 3-pt. jump shot  
10:22   Defensive rebound by Clint Capela  
10:14 +2 Clint Capela made hook shot, assist by Austin Rivers 4-4
10:00   Kyle Anderson missed 3-pt. jump shot  
9:58   Defensive rebound by James Harden  
9:51   Shooting foul on Kyle Anderson  
9:51 +1 James Harden made 1st of 3 free throws 5-4
9:51 +1 James Harden made 2nd of 3 free throws 6-4
9:51 +1 James Harden made 3rd of 3 free throws 7-4
9:34   Jaren Jackson Jr. missed turnaround jump shot  
9:30   Defensive rebound by Clint Capela  
9:22   Shooting foul on Dillon Brooks  
9:22 +1 Clint Capela made 1st of 2 free throws 8-4
9:22 +1 Clint Capela made 2nd of 2 free throws 9-4
9:12 +2 Ja Morant made finger-roll layup, assist by Jonas Valanciunas 9-6
8:55 +3 James Harden made 3-pt. jump shot 12-6
8:39 +2 Jonas Valanciunas made floating jump shot 12-8
8:25 +2 Austin Rivers made floating jump shot 14-8
8:19   Dillon Brooks missed 3-pt. jump shot  
8:18   Defensive rebound by Clint Capela  
8:13   Personal foul on Dillon Brooks  
8:13   Violation  
8:05 +3 James Harden made 3-pt. jump shot 17-8
7:47   Jonas Valanciunas missed turnaround jump shot  
7:45   Defensive rebound by Clint Capela  
7:35   James Harden missed floating jump shot  
7:32   Offensive rebound by Clint Capela  
7:32 +2 Clint Capela made dunk 19-8
7:21 +2 Ja Morant made floating jump shot 19-10
6:57   James Harden missed 3-pt. jump shot  
6:56   Defensive rebound by Jonas Valanciunas  
6:45 +3 Ja Morant made 3-pt. jump shot 19-13
6:32   Shooting foul on Ja Morant  
6:32 +1 Austin Rivers made 1st of 2 free throws 20-13
6:32   Austin Rivers missed 2nd of 2 free throws  
6:29   Defensive rebound by Brandon Clarke  
6:17 +3 De'Anthony Melton made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Ja Morant 20-16
6:06 +2 James Harden made floating jump shot 22-16
5:50   Personal foul on Danuel House Jr.  
5:39 +2 De'Anthony Melton made jump shot, assist by Grayson Allen 22-18
5:27   Eric Gordon missed 3-pt. jump shot  
5:24   Defensive rebound by Brandon Clarke  
5:12 +2 Jonas Valanciunas made reverse layup, assist by Brandon Clarke 22-20
4:51   Offensive foul on Clint Capela  
4:51   Turnover on Clint Capela  
4:29 +2 Jonas Valanciunas made jump shot, assist by De'Anthony Melton 22-22
4:12 +2 James Harden made driving layup 24-22
3:55   Grayson Allen missed 3-pt. jump shot  
3:51   Offensive rebound by Jonas Valanciunas  
3:50   Jonas Valanciunas missed dunk  
3:47   Defensive rebound by Danuel House Jr.  
3:39 +3 Eric Gordon made 3-pt. jump shot 27-22
3:26 +2 Jonas Valanciunas made finger-roll layup 27-24
3:03 +2 James Harden made floating jump shot 29-24
2:46   Jonas Valanciunas missed 3-pt. jump shot  
2:43   Defensive rebound by P.J. Tucker  
2:33 +2 Clint Capela made alley-oop shot, assist by P.J. Tucker 31-24
2:11 +2 Tyus Jones made floating jump shot, assist by Jonas Valanciunas 31-26
2:05   Shooting foul on Grayson Allen  
2:05 +1 Danuel House Jr. made 1st of 2 free throws 32-26
2:05 +1 Danuel House Jr. made 2nd of 2 free throws 33-26
1:46 +2 Brandon Clarke made turnaround jump shot, assist by Jaren Jackson Jr. 33-28
1:28 +2 Eric Gordon made finger-roll layup, assist by Isaiah Hartenstein 35-28
1:17   Tyus Jones missed floating jump shot  
1:15   Defensive rebound by Danuel House Jr.  
1:11   Lost ball turnover on Danuel House Jr., stolen by Jaren Jackson Jr.  
1:07 +2 Brandon Clarke made finger-roll layup, assist by De'Anthony Melton 35-30
0:44   Eric Gordon missed 3-pt. jump shot  
0:43   HOU team rebound  
0:43   Personal foul on Jaren Jackson Jr.  
0:43 +1 Isaiah Hartenstein made 1st of 2 free throws 36-30
0:43 +1 Isaiah Hartenstein made 2nd of 2 free throws 37-30
0:30 +2 Brandon Clarke made jump shot, assist by Grayson Allen 37-32
0:06   Ben McLemore missed 3-pt. jump shot  
0:03   Defensive rebound by De'Anthony Melton  
0:00   De'Anthony Melton missed 3-pt. jump shot  
0:00   MEM team rebound  
0:00   End of period  

2nd Quarter

Time Team Play Score
11:43   Jumpball  
11:36   Austin Rivers missed 3-pt. jump shot  
11:32   Offensive rebound by Eric Gordon  
11:27   Shooting foul on Jaren Jackson Jr.  
11:27 +1 Austin Rivers made 1st of 2 free throws 38-32
11:27 +1 Austin Rivers made 2nd of 2 free throws 39-32
11:10 +2 Dillon Brooks made driving layup, assist by Ja Morant 39-34
10:59   Austin Rivers missed finger-roll layup  
10:56   Defensive rebound by Solomon Hill  
10:54 +3 Dillon Brooks made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Solomon Hill 39-37
10:41   Eric Gordon missed 3-pt. jump shot  
10:38   Defensive rebound by Solomon Hill  
10:33 +2 Jaren Jackson Jr. made layup, assist by Solomon Hill 39-39
10:18 +2 Eric Gordon made driving layup, assist by Austin Rivers 41-39
10:06 +2 Jaren Jackson Jr. made layup, assist by Ja Morant 41-41
10:06   Shooting foul on Austin Rivers  
10:06 +1 Jaren Jackson Jr. made free throw 41-42
9:55   Ben McLemore missed 3-pt. jump shot  
9:53   Defensive rebound by Jaren Jackson Jr.  
9:37 +3 Jaren Jackson Jr. made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Dillon Brooks 41-45
9:22   Eric Gordon missed 3-pt. jump shot  
9:17   Defensive rebound by Solomon Hill  
9:11 +2 Grayson Allen made floating jump shot, assist by Solomon Hill 41-47
8:50   James Harden missed 3-pt. jump shot  
8:48   Offensive rebound by James Harden  
8:44 +2 Clint Capela made alley-oop shot, assist by James Harden 43-47
8:32   Solomon Hill missed 3-pt. jump shot  
8:29   Defensive rebound by Austin Rivers  
8:14   James Harden missed 3-pt. jump shot  
8:11   Defensive rebound by Grayson Allen  
8:06 +3 Jaren Jackson Jr. made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Grayson Allen 43-50
7:42 +2 Clint Capela made reverse layup, assist by Austin Rivers 45-50
7:25 +3 Dillon Brooks made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Grayson Allen 45-53
7:07   Bad pass turnover on James Harden, stolen by Dillon Brooks  
7:04   Shooting foul on James Harden  
7:04 +1 Grayson Allen made 1st of 2 free throws 45-54
7:04 +1 Grayson Allen made 2nd of 2 free throws 45-55
6:49 +2 Danuel House Jr. made finger-roll layup, assist by P.J. Tucker 47-55
6:41 +2 Ja Morant made layup 47-57
6:27   James Harden missed driving layup, blocked by Dillon Brooks  
6:22   Offensive rebound by P.J. Tucker  
6:20   Lost ball turnover on Austin Rivers, stolen by Ja Morant  
6:17 +2 Jaren Jackson Jr. made dunk, assist by Ja Morant 47-59
6:04   Bad pass turnover on Clint Capela, stolen by Jaren Jackson Jr.  
6:03   Out of bounds turnover on Jaren Jackson Jr.  
6:00   Bad pass turnover on Eric Gordon, stolen by Jaren Jackson Jr.  
5:56   Jaren Jackson Jr. missed floating jump shot  
5:53   Defensive rebound by Clint Capela  
5:35   James Harden missed 3-pt. jump shot  
5:31   Offensive rebound by Danuel House Jr.  
5:31   Danuel House Jr. missed dunk  
5:30   Defensive rebound by Dillon Brooks  
5:14   Personal foul on James Harden  
5:07   Dillon Brooks missed floating jump shot  
5:04   Defensive rebound by Ben McLemore  
4:56   Shooting foul on Kyle Anderson  
4:56 +1 James Harden made 1st of 2 free throws 48-59
4:56 +1 James Harden made 2nd of 2 free throws 49-59
4:46   Lost ball turnover on Brandon Clarke, stolen by Eric Gordon  
4:39 +2 Ben McLemore made layup, assist by Eric Gordon 51-59
4:31   Dillon Brooks missed 3-pt. jump shot  
4:29   Defensive rebound by Clint Capela  
4:14   Bad pass turnover on Ben McLemore, stolen by Brandon Clarke  
4:11   Brandon Clarke missed layup, blocked by Eric Gordon  
4:04   Shooting foul on Clint Capela  
4:04 +1 Jonas Valanciunas made 2nd of 2 free throws 51-61
3:47   P.J. Tucker missed floating jump shot  
3:44   Offensive rebound by Clint Capela  
3:36   James Harden missed 3-pt. jump shot  
3:33   Offensive rebound by James Harden  
3:31   Eric Gordon missed 3-pt. jump shot  
3:27   Defensive rebound by Kyle Anderson  
3:23   De'Anthony Melton missed 3-pt. jump shot  
3:21   Defensive rebound by Eric Gordon  
3:05   James Harden missed 3-pt. jump shot  
2:47   Jonas Valanciunas missed jump shot  
2:41   Defensive rebound by Clint Capela  
2:33   Shooting foul on De'Anthony Melton  
2:33 +1 James Harden made 1st of 2 free throws 52-61
2:33 +1 James Harden made 2nd of 2 free throws 53-61
2:23   Brandon Clarke missed 3-pt. jump shot  
2:22   MEM team rebound  
2:22   Personal foul on Clint Capela  
2:22   Jonas Valanciunas missed 1st of 2 free throws  
2:22   MEM team rebound  
2:22 +1 Jonas Valanciunas made 2nd of 2 free throws 53-62
2:06 +3 James Harden made 3-pt. jump shot 56-62
1:49 +2 Jonas Valanciunas made turnaround jump shot, assist by Ja Morant 56-64
1:43 +3 Eric Gordon made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by James Harden 59-64
1:26   De'Anthony Melton missed jump shot  
1:25   HOU team rebound  
1:25   Personal foul on Brandon Clarke  
1:14   Ben McLemore missed 3-pt. jump shot  
1:10   Defensive rebound by De'Anthony Melton  
0:58   De'Anthony Melton missed 3-pt. jump shot  
0:56   Defensive rebound by Clint Capela  
0:51   James Harden missed layup, blocked by De'Anthony Melton  
0:51   HOU team rebound  
0:39   James Harden missed 3-pt. jump shot  
0:30 +2 Brandon Clarke made alley-oop shot, assist by Ja Morant 59-66
0:09 +2 James Harden made floating jump shot 61-66
0:06   De'Anthony Melton missed 1st of 2 free throws  
0:06   MEM team rebound  
0:06 +1 De'Anthony Melton made 2nd of 2 free throws 61-67
0:02   Offensive foul on P.J. Tucker  
0:02   Turnover on P.J. Tucker  
0:00   Lost ball turnover on Ja Morant, stolen by Ben McLemore  
0:00   Ben McLemore missed 3-pt. jump shot, blocked by Ja Morant  
0:00   HOU team rebound  
0:00   End of period  

3rd Quarter

Time Team Play Score
11:36   James Harden missed 3-pt. jump shot  
11:32   Defensive rebound by Ja Morant  
11:22   Bad pass turnover on Ja Morant, stolen by P.J. Tucker  
11:16 +3 Ben McLemore made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Austin Rivers 64-67
11:02 +3 Dillon Brooks made 3-pt. jump shot 64-70
10:39 +2 James Harden made floating jump shot 66-70
10:15   Jonas Valanciunas missed 3-pt. jump shot  
10:14   HOU team rebound  
10:14   Personal foul on Jaren Jackson Jr.  
10:01   Austin Rivers missed 3-pt. jump shot  
9:57   Defensive rebound by Kyle Anderson  
9:52   Kyle Anderson missed 3-pt. jump shot  
9:49   Defensive rebound by Clint Capela  
9:28