Highlights: Pelicans snap skid with blowout win at Grizzlies
The prescription for the ailing patient is now clear.
When struggling, the New Orleans Pelicans need a dose of Grizzlies.
That has been the elixir for the past few seasons now.
The 3-game losing streak for the Pelicans came to a resounding end in Memphis Tuesday night as the Pelicans left the Grizzlies singing the blues in a smashing 144-113 victory.
The 144 points are the second most in franchise history for the Pelicans.
The 61.5 percent shooting from the field was a season best (56-of-91). In fact, it was the highest single game shooting percentage since a 2014 victory over Minnesota.
An unusual twist of fate saw New Orleans drill 19-of-38 from 3-point range (50%). The Pelicans outscored the Grizzlies 57-39 from 3-point range.
When New Orleans makes more 3-pointers than its opponent, the Pelicans are 6-0. It has only happened six times in 27 games.
New Orleans crushed Memphis 47-32 on the boards. The Pelicans controlled points in the paint by a 70-54 margin.
The Pelicans have won both meetings with Memphis this year after sweeping the Grizzlies a year ago. New Orleans has now won five in a row over the Grizzlies and 11 of the last 15 against Memphis.
New Orleans trailed by as many as 11 points in the first quarter but closed to within three points at 32-29 by the end of the quarter, closing the period on a 5-0 run.
Memphis opened up a 48-39 lead in the second quarter but New Orleans finished the half on a 24-10 run to take a 63-58 lead by halftime.
Zion Williamson and Josh Hart each scored 15 points in the first half for New Orleans.
New Orleans blitzed the Grizzlies 38-23 in the third quarter, making 14-of-21 field goal attempts, to put the game away at 101-81 and only expanded the lead in the final quarter.
New Orleans is now 6-0 when making more 3-pointers than their opponents.
Williamson was brilliant with 31 points in just 28 minutes, connecting on 13-of-16 from the field, including a 3-pointer. Williamson made all four free throw attempts as well and added seven rebounds, six assists and three steals in a complete effort. It was the 50th career game for Williamson, who continues to improve every facet of his game.
Josh Hart was terrific with a season high 27 points, including 6-of-9 from 3-point range and he added nine rebounds and two assists.
Brandon Ingram scored 22 points with seven assists, four rebounds and two steals. Billy Hernangomez was outstanding off the bench with 14 points and eight rebounds in 19 minutes.
Speaking of bench scoring, which has been an issue most of the season, the Pelicans’ reserves put on a show with 63 points and outscored Memphis reserves 63-30.
After committing 14 turnovers in the first half, the Pelicans had just five turnovers in the second half as both teams finished with 19 turnovers.
The Pelicans concluded their 4-game road trip 1-3 and return home and must play the second of a back-to-back Wednesday night against Portland at Smoothie King Center. The Blazers will also be playing the second of a back-to-back after winning 115-104 at Oklahoma City.
The Blazers are red hot, winners of five straight games and at 17-10 and fifth in the Western Conference.
This game will prove to be a measuring stick for a team that was playing woefully poor defensively prior to this one. While the defensive effort was better in Memphis, it was all about the maximum offensive efficiency as the Pelicans finished with 33 assists.
It was a fun game to watch.
Let us hope it was not just a brief respite from recent failure but the start of long term success.
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Born and raised in the New Orleans area, CCSE CEO Ken Trahan has been a sports media fixture in the community for nearly four decades. Ken started NewOrleans.com/Sports with Bill Hammack and Don Jones in 2008. In 2011, the site became SportsNOLA.com. On August 1, 2017, Ken helped launch CrescentCitySports.com. Having accumulated national awards/recognition (National Sports Media Association, National Football…