Grizzlies finally win, end 19-game losing streak

From ESPN - March 17, 2018

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Denver Nuggets did something no NBA team has done in almost seven weeks: They lost to the Memphis Grizzlies.

Dillon Brooks scored 24 points, Tyreke Evans added 20, and the Grizzlies snapped a 19-game losing streak with a 101-94 victory over the Nuggets on Saturday night.

"It was great. We are all excited," said Brooks, who hit all four of his 3-pointers in the third to keep Memphis ahead. "I was confident in the shot, and they were falling. They were all in the same spot, so I just shot it the same way."

The Nuggets, who entered the night in ninth place in the Western Conference, failed to gain ground on the final playoff spot by losing to the team that entered the night with the league's worst record.

The defeat was a lousy first step as the Nuggets embark on a seven-game road trip. They do not return home until April 1 against the Milwaukee Bucks.

"It's a bad loss," Denver coach Michael Malone said, adding: "It's a tough way to start this road trip."

The Nuggets, who played without leading scorer Gary Harris due to a right knee sprain suffered Thursday against Detroit, struggled through a miserable first half of shooting, connecting on 22 percent in the first quarter. Memphis stretched its lead to 21 early in the second quarter before Denver cut it to 53-48 at halftime.

Malone expressed his disappointment with the starters and their lack of energy.

"Our starting group did an awful job of starting the game with any real sense of urgency, and we built ourselves a 21-point hole on the road," Malone said.

Wayne Selden scored 16 points for Memphis by hitting six of seven shots, including four of five from outside the arc.

Nikola Jokic led the Nuggets with 17 points and 12 rebounds, while Jamal Murray finished with 16 points on 5-of-18 shooting. Denver shot just 37 percent overall and 27 percent from 3-point range.

Memphis never trailed, though the Nuggets tied the game twice near the eight-minute mark of the fourth. The Grizzlies scored the game's final five points to win for the first time since defeating the Phoenix Suns on Jan. 29.

"It validates how hard you need to work for 48 minutes regardless of what happens on the offensive end," Gasol said. "I thought for the most part we were really engaged offensively."



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