29-34
89 -
Team 1 2 3 4
CHA 21 23 17 28
MEM 25 27 27 32
111
36-26

Bobcats-Grizzlies Preview

The Associated Press

The Charlotte Bobcats are on track for the franchise's second playoff berth thanks to some strong play at home, but they could use some better performances on the road.

The Bobcats would appear to have another challenge with Saturday night's visit to the Memphis Grizzlies, winners of five in a row on their own floor.

Charlotte (29-33) is seventh in the Eastern Conference and five games ahead of ninth-place Detroit after earning its sixth consecutive home win Friday, 101-92 over Cleveland. Al Jefferson had a team-best 28 points as the Bobcats surpassed their win total from the previous two seasons.

"The playoffs started three weeks ago," Jefferson said. "We're right there. Now we have to turn it on and keep it on. From here on out, we have to be focused and locked in.

"We've got to continue to grow and be professional. We can't be satisfied. Where we're at is a long way from where we were two years ago, but we want to continue to get better.

Kemba Walker chipped in 20 points and 14 assists while helping the club overcome a third consecutive absence from starting guard Gerald Henderson, who has a strained right calf.

Henderson missed the finale of a winless three-game road trip Monday against Miami. The Bobcats, losers of 13 of 19 on the road, also faced two of the West's top two teams during that trek in San Antonio and Oklahoma City.

The Grizzlies (35-26) are a game out of eighth place in the West, but have the league's second-best record since Jan. 10 at 20-7. One of those losses, though, came at the hands of the Bobcats, who won 92-89 on Feb. 22.

Walker had a team-leading 31 points, including four free throws in the final 24 seconds, as Charlotte ended a three-game skid in the series.

The Bobcats are 2-6 all-time in Memphis and have lost in their last two visits by a combined 52 points.

The Grizzlies enter having taken 11 of 13 in Memphis and secured their longest win streak there this season with a 110-96 victory over Cleveland last Saturday. Memphis has also matched a season high by topping 100 points in its last three home contests.

The Grizzlies fell well short of the century mark Friday in Chicago but earned their third victory in their last four overall. They held the Bulls to less than 15 points in the first and fourth quarters in an 85-77 win.

"Our defense was pretty steady," coach Dave Joerger said. "Thirty-nine in the first half, 38 in the second half. That was just solid for us. We kept them off the glass and they're a good offensive rebounding team. We contested shots and we pressured guys."

Marc Gasol had 18 points and 10 rebounds while Zach Randolph had 10 points and 11 boards in his return from a one-game absence due to the flu.

Jefferson has 20 or more points in 22 of his last 25 games but matched a season low with six points on 2-of-13 shooting against Memphis last month. In five games since, he's averaged 29.0 points and shot 63.5 percent.

Sign up for Yahoo Fantasy Hockey
Sorry you didn't like this comment. Please provide a reason below.

Are you sure?
Rating failed. Try again.
Request failed. Try again.
We will promote constructive and witty comments to the top, so everyone sees them!
Sorry, we can’t load comments right now. Try again.
    • Nuggets should feel at home in L.A. vs. Lakers

      The Denver Nuggets will try to find their comfort zone again inside the friendly confines of Staples Center on Tuesday when they face the Los Angeles Lakers. The Nuggets have won six in a row on the Lakers' home court, a streak that dates back to a … More »

      AP - Sports - 7 hours ago
    • Paul hurt as Clippers' win streak hits 7

      Paul hurt as Clippers' win streak hits 7

      The last time Chris Paul went down with an injury, the Los Angeles Clippers went into a tailspin. J.J. Redick scored 20 points, DeAndre Jordan had 19 points and 15 rebounds, and the streaking Clippers overcame Paul's latest injury to defeat the … More »

      AP - Sports - 7 hours ago
    • Clippers' Paul to have MRI on injured thumb

      Clippers' Paul to have MRI on injured thumb

      (Reuters) - Los Angeles Clippers point guard Chris Paul injured his left thumb during his team’s 120-98 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday and will have an MRI to determine the extent of the damage. Paul was injured late in the second … More »

      Reuters - 8 hours ago
    • NBA-Clippers' Paul to have MRI on injured thumb

      Jan 16 (Reuters) - Los Angeles Clippers point guard Chris Paul injured his left thumb during his team's 120-98 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday and will have an MRI to determine the extent of the damage. Paul was injured late in the … More »

      Reuters - 8 hours ago
    • GAME RECAP: Clippers 120, Thunder 98

      GAME RECAP: Clippers 120, Thunder 98

      DeAndre Jordan records a double-double with 19 points and 15 boards, Marreese Speights comes off the bench and records a double-double of his own with 23 points and 10 boards as the Clippers top the Thunder at home. … More »

      NBA.com - 8 hours ago