Sports

Jonas Valanciunas leads Grizzlies past Wizards


FILE – Jonas Valanciunas #17 of the Memphis Grizzlies shoots in the game against the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on February 12, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. Meg Oliphant/Getty Images/AFP 

Jonas Valanciunas recorded 29 points and 20 rebounds to lift the host Memphis Grizzlies to a 127-112 victory over the Washington Wizards on Wednesday.

Valanciunas highlighted his 21st double-double of the season by making 12 of 21 shots from the floor. The point total represented his season high, while the rebound total matched his season best.

Ja Morant collected 21 points and 10 assists, and rookie Desmond Bane added a season-high 20 points for the Grizzlies, who had six players score in double figures. Memphis earned its third win in four games.

Kyle Anderson finished with 13 points, De’Anthony Melton had 11 and Dillon Brooks added 10 as the Grizzlies completed a season sweep of the Wizards. Memphis posted a 125-111 win over Washington on March 2.

Bradley Beal recorded with 21 points despite making just 6 of 22 shots from the floor for the Wizards, who fell for the third time in four games.

Russell Westbrook had 20 points and 10 assists to notch his 13th consecutive double-double.

Beal’s 3-pointer gave Washington a 79-78 lead with 5:18 remaining in the third before Memphis finished the quarter on a 16-6 run. Valanciunas ignited the surge with a three-point play and Melton sank a 3-pointer to boot.

Raul Neto’s step-back jumper trimmed the Grizzlies’ lead to 103-97 with eight minutes to play. However, Valanciunas and Bane converted on consecutive possessions to restore Memphis’ double-digit advantage. The Grizzlies were not seriously threatened the rest of the way.

Brooks drained a 3-pointer to push Memphis’ advantage to 60-41 with 4:51 remaining in the second quarter before Washington made a spirited comeback. Deni Avdija sank a pair of 3-pointers as the Wizards scored 21 of the next 28 points to trim the Grizzlies’ lead to five at halftime.

Westbrook’s layup capped a 12-6 surge that gave Washington a 74-73 advantage with 7:26 remaining in the third quarter. The Wizards’ lead was their first since Rui Hachimura made the game’s first basket.

Memphis scored 26 points in the paint en route to securing a 35-26 lead after the first quarter. While the Grizzlies made 62.5 percent of their shots in the period, Beal wasn’t as fortunate. He missed all five shots he attempted and finished the quarter with just two points.

Field Level Media

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