Gasol’s 21, Evans’ free throws help Grizzlies snap skid
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) – Marc Gasol scored 21 points, Tyreke Evans added 16 – including two key free throws with 12.7 seconds left – and the Memphis Grizzlies snapped an 11-game skid with a 95-92 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Monday night.
Memphis, which hadn’t won since Nov. 7, had to wait a bit longer after Evans’ free throws. On the ensuing possession, Jimmy Butler’s off-balance, 26-footer over Andrew Harrison bounced off the backboard and grazed the rim, snapping the Grizzlies skid.
Butler led Minnesota with 30 points, his second-straight game with at least 30. Taj Gibson finished with 14 points, while Andrew Wiggins and Jeff Teague added 12 points each.
The game was close throughout with 14 lead changes and 12 ties, the last tie coming at 86-all with 5:43 remaining. After a pair of free throws from Gasol, Memphis never surrendered the lead the rest of the way, although the margin didn’t reach more than three points.
Memphis held Minnesota to only 17 points in the fourth in holding off the Timberwolves.
Both teams shot well in the first half, converting at least 50 percent overall. Memphis took a 56-53 lead into intermission as Gasol had 12 and Green scored 10.
Butler had 17 points for Minnesota, missing only two of his eight shots in the half.
Timberwolves: The loss continued a trend for Minnesota, alternating a win and a loss over the last eight games. … F Nemanja Bjelica missed his seventh game with a sprained left foot. He was not with the team Monday night, but coach Tom Thibodeau said he expects Bjelica to meet the team in LA on Wednesday. … Karl-Anthony Towns, Minnesota’s leading scorer at 20.3 points a game, was limited to seven points, taking only six shots.
Grizzlies: In addition to snapping the losing streak, Memphis also stopped an eight-game skid at home, matching the longest home losing streak since moving to Memphis. … The longest home losing streak in franchise history is 11 when team was in Vancouver in the latter part of the 1995-96 season, the franchise’s inaugural campaign.
Timberwolves: Travel to Los Angeles to face the Clippers on Wednesday night.
Grizzlies: Face the Knicks in New York on Wednesday night.
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