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NBA -- Grizzlies rally from 26 down, beat Kings by 1


PhilBoxing.com




CHICAGO -- Courtney Lee converted on a wide open alley-oop as time expired and the Memphis Grizzlies scored an improbable, 111-110, come from behind win over the Sacramento Kings on Thursday night at the FedEx Forum.

Courtney's heroics capped a blistering Grizzlies rally that erased the Kings' 26-point lead, including a 101-83 cushion at the 7:57 mark of the fourth quarter.

After a prolonged review by the referees officiating the thriller, it was determined that despite having only 0.3 seconds left in the game clock, Lee got off the shot before the buzzer sounded.

"We lost that game, and it didn't come down to the last play. We built a 26-point lead and threw it away. We didn't reserve to win that game," a disappointed Kings head coach Michael Malone told ESPN after the game.

This was the second straight devastating defeat for the Kings, who also surrendered a 24-point lead in a 106-98 loss to the Dallas Mavericks last Tuesday night at the American Airlines Center.

Lee finished only with 16 but Memphis got big contributions from its regulars, including point guard Mike Conley Jr, who had 22 points and 11 assists. Marc Gasol registered 20 and seven boards and Zach Randolph added 17 and eight rebounds.

Thursday night's mini miracle was the Grizzlies 18 consecutive regular season win in their building, one of the toughest places to invade in the NBA. Memphis improved to 8-1 in the overall standings, the best in league in this young season.

"It definitely is heartbreaking. That's the difference in a battle-tested playoff team and us," said Rudy Gay, who led the Kings with 25 points and seven rebounds.

DeMarcus Cousins pitched in 22 points and 12 boards for Sacramento while point guard had 20. Ben McLemore added 17 but he missed two big free throws late, paving the way for Lee and Memphis to pull the stunning reversal. (Homer D. Sayson)

Photo: An ecstatic Memphis Grizzlies team celebrate wildly after rallying from 26 points down to dethrone the Sacramento Kings, 111-110, on Thursday night at the FedEx Forum.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Homer D. Sayson.


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