Morant, Memphis win a thriller on Curry’s home court again



SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Ja Morant made a driving layup with 57.9 seconds left and shined in Stephen Curry’s home building once again, scoring 30 points as the Memphis Grizzlies made it two straight thrilling overtime wins against the Golden State Warriors with a 104-101 victory Thursday night.

Curry wound up with 36 points, but missed two key 3-pointers late in a rematch of the play-in game from five months ago that Memphis won 117-112 in OT on May 21 at Chase Center.

Curry missed a 3 to end regulation, leaving the teams tied at 98, then another with 1:18 remaining in OT to finish 7 for 20 from deep in the Warriors’ first loss following a 4-0 start.

Desmond Bane scored 19 for the Grizzlies, who ended a two-game skid and concluded their four-game West Coast trip with a back-to-back following a 116-96 defeat at Portland on Wednesday night.

Damion Lee added 14 points off the bench for Golden State.

Jaren Jackson Jr.’s 3-pointer got the Grizzlies within 86-84 at the 7:45 mark of the fourth, then Memphis capitalized on a turnover by Andre Iguodala and tied it the next time down on De’Anthony Melton’s short jumper.

That started a furious, back-and-forth finish reminiscent of the thriller from five months earlier.

”Even though we were on the short end of the stick I liked the play-in,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. ”I thought it created interesting races not just for the play-in spots, but the races for the five and six seed to avoid the play-in games. It seemed to make the final month of the season much more interesting.”

Draymond Green gave everyone a scare when he went down grabbing his knee with 2:50 left before halftime but he was fine and wound up with a key block – one of his five on the night – and rebound in the final 18.3 seconds.

Curry, playing 12 years to the day after making his NBA debut, shot 11 for 29 and also contributed eight assists and seven rebounds as the Warriors began an eight-game homestand. They had their best start since beginning 24-0 in 2015-16.


Former Warriors center Zaza Pachulia, now in the front office as a consultant, hosted family members of a fallen volunteer crossing guard who worked at Stanley Middle School where Pachulia’s two sons attend in the East Bay suburb of Lafayette.

Ashley Dias was killed in September when he was hit by a car while helping three children out of harm’s way before the accident at the school he once attended. Pachulia’s youngest son witnessed the ordeal.

Curry also said hello to Dias’ parents and siblings after having previously reached out to the family.

”It’s such a tragic loss,” Pachulia said of the avid sports fan Dias. ”The last two years we’ve been losing so many people because of this pandemic, then you hear this guy, Ashley Dias, was a cross guard and literally volunteering and helping thousands of kids. … I couldn’t thank him for taking care of our kids so how about we invite them to the game. Seeing their spirits lifted up feels so good.”

Also before the game, the Warriors hosted an LGBTQ+ panel at their ninth-floor sky bar with spectacular city views that was open to all fans with a ticket as Golden State hosted its LGBTQ+ night.


Grizzlies: Morant made 6 of 6 free throws and the Grizzlies were 14 for 14. … Taylor Jenkins coached his 150th game. He received a technical with 6:55 left in the third. … Memphis had lost six of the last seven regular-season matchups on the Warriors’ home floor.

Warriors: Lee has scored in double figures in all five games. … Golden State had 12 assists on 14 made baskets in the first quarter, shooting 14 for 24 to take a 37-20 lead. … The play-in loss to the Grizzlies snapped the Warriors’ six-game home winning streak – just Golden State’s second loss at Chase Center over the final 12. … The Stanford men’s basketball team sat courtside for Curry’s always-entertaining warmups.


Grizzlies: Host Miami on Saturday night having won the last three against the Heat and two in a row at home.

Warriors: Golden State, whose eight straight home games matches the longest in franchise history also done from Jan. 24-Feb. 9, 2011, hosts the Thunder on Saturday night having just won 106-98 at Oklahoma City on Tuesday for a four-game winning streak in the series.

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