Walker's big 4th quarter leads Hornets past Grizzlies
Kemba Walker scored 22 points, including 12 in the fourth quarter, and the visiting Charlotte Hornets added to the Memphis Grizzlies' misery with a 118-107 victory on Wednesday night. The Hornets opened the second half with an 11-0 run to stretch their lead to 15, and they were never seriously threatened again.
The Hornets bounced back from a 25-point loss at Indiana on Sunday and have won four of their last five. They have won in each of the past four seasons at Memphis, but are only 7-16 on the road this season. The Grizzlies have lost seven straight and 13 of 14.
The loss ended a surreal day for the Grizzlies. First, ownership confirmed that veteran stars Mike Conley and Marc Gasol were on the trading block. Then came an afternoon fire in the Grizzlies' locker room that forced everyone to evacuate the FedEx Forum, and the Grizzlies eventually had to change locker rooms.
Neither Conley nor Gasol seemed affected by the trade news. Conley finished with 31 points on 9 of 17 shooting, and Gasol had a triple-double with 22 points, 17 rebounds and 10 assists. The Grizzlies also got 15 points from Jaren Jackson Jr., 14 from JaMychal Green and 10 from Justin Holiday.
Nicolas Batum added 18 points for the Hornets. Jeremy Lamb and Tony Parker scored 17 each, and Marvin Williams scored 11. The Hornets shot 53.2 percent from the field and committed only nine turnovers.
The Grizzlies led by as many as eight early but the Hornets came back to lead 23-22 after one quarter. The Hornets pushed the lead to 42-28 in the second quarter before the Grizzlies cut the Charlotte lead to 58-54 at halftime. The Hornets then led 86-76 after three quarters.
The Hornets were playing the second game of a three-game road trip, which ends Friday night at Milwaukee. The Grizzlies, who were playing the second game of a five-game homestand, face Sacramento on Friday.
The Hornets and Grizzlies will meet again in Charlotte on Feb. 1. --Field Level Media
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