Williamson strong inside as Pelicans trounce Grizzlies
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Zion Williamson scored 31 points while dominating inside, and the New Orleans Pelicans ended a three-game skid with a 144-113 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on Tuesday night.
Williamson, who was 13 of 16 from the field, added seven rebounds and six assists as the Pelicans finished with a season high in points. Josh Hart scored a season-high 27 points and Brandon Ingram had 22 for New Orleans.
Ja Morant scored 28 points on 12-of-16 shooting for Memphis. Kyle Anderson finished with 19 points and Dillon Brooks scored 18, going 4 of 6 from 3-point range.
The Pelicans won their fifth straight over the Grizzlies in the latest showdown between Williamson, the top overall pick in the 2019 draft, and Morant, who was taken second.
The Pelicans, who beat Memphis 118-109 on Feb. 6 in New Orleans, pulled away in the third quarter, outscoring Memphis 38-23 to take a 101-81 lead at the end of the period.
Memphis never threatened in the fourth as the Pelicans' lead eventually ballooned to 34 points.
The Pelicans used a strong second quarter and 15 points each from Hart and Williamson to carry a 63-58 lead into halftime.
Pelicans: Wrapped up a four-game trip with a 1-3 record. ... Are 16-0 against the Grizzlies when scoring at least 110 points. ... JJ Redick missed his first free throw of the season late in the third quarter, ending a string of 33 straight. ... Either Williamson or Ingram has led Pelicans in scoring all but one game this season. Nickeil Alexander-Walker, the second-year pro from Virginia Tech, scored 37 against the Clippers on Jan. 13.
Grizzlies: Morant had eight assists, ending a string of three straight games of double-digit assists. ... Dillon Brooks made four 3-pointers, passing Marc Gasol for seventh on the franchise list for made 3s with 302.
Pelicans: Host Portland on Wednesday.
Grizzlies: Host Oklahoma City on Wednesday.
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