PHOENIX (AP) – Jerryd Bayless scored 13 of his 17 points in the fourth quarter, coming off the bench to help the Memphis Grizzlies overcome Goran Dragic’s 33 points in a 99-91 win over the Phoenix Suns on Thursday night.
Bayless helped the Grizzlies recover from the Suns’ 18-0 third-quarter run, giving Memphis a 94-84 lead on a 3-pointer with 4:30 to play.
Zach Randolph had 20 points and 15 rebounds in helping the Grizzlies cool the Suns for a night, the second win for the visitors in two meetings between the teams this season. Ed Davis added 16 points and 11 rebounds.
Dragic scored 15 of his 33 points during the Suns’ big third quarter. Dragic added seven assists and finished with a career high in points on the night the Suns gave away thousands of bobbleheads bearing his likeness.
The Suns couldn’t fight off the Grizzlies, who scored seven straight points to regain the lead after trailing by four to start the final quarter. Bayless, who played high school basketball just up the street from the US Airways Center, fueled the run with a 3-pointer and jumper to give the Grizzlies an 80-75 lead with 9:31 left to play.
Dragic drilled a 3-pointer after a layup by Ed Davis and hit another after a layup by James Johnson to pull Phoenix within 84-81, but the Suns never got the lead back.
The Suns led 26-22 after one quarter, but struggled with their shooting in the second, when they made just 6 of 23 from the floor.
Memphis took a five-point lead on a driving layup from Mike Conley with 7:26 to play in the quarter. Then Conley flipped a no-look pass behind his back to Davis for the assist on a basket and a 38-31 lead.
The Suns cut the lead to 46-41 on a dunk from Markieff Morris with 2:20 left in the half, but the Grizzlies scored the next seven points and took a 53-41 lead into the break.
Randolph, who didn’t play in the first meeting between the teams this season in Tennessee, led Memphis with 14 first-half points and grabbed eight rebounds. The Suns missed nine of 11 3-point attempts in the first half.
The Suns’ 41 first half points was one away from their season low of 40 last week at Golden State.
It didn’t take long, however, for Phoenix to get back into the game. The Suns scored 16 unanswered points over a three-minute span in the third quarter, including a Dragic step-back jumper that gave them a 58-57 lead.
The Suns’ scoring streak reached 18 straight points on P.J. Tucker’s layup with 6:12 left in the quarter that gave the Suns a 62-57 lead.
Memphis finally broke the run with Conley’s two free throws at the 5:43 mark.
Channing Frye scored eight of his 14 points in the game in the third quarter.
NOTES: Suns guard Eric Bledsoe was a late scratch from the starting lineup due to a right knee sprain, and didn’t play. Gerald Green started at the two-guard in Bledsoe’s place. Coach Jeff Hornacek said Bledsoe was injured during the Suns’ game against the Clippers on Monday. . Hornacek was named the NBA’s Western Conference Coach of the Month for December. He led Phoenix to a 10-3 record during the month. Hornacek is the third person in NBA history to win both Coach of the Month and Player of the Month and the first to do so with the same franchise.
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)