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Recap: Clippers , Grizzlies
Date: March 14, 2011 8:00 PM EDT
  

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - The Los Angeles Clippers looked like a team ready to go home.

The Memphis Grizzlies made sure to send them packing.

Zach Randolph had 30 points and 12 rebounds to help the Memphis Grizzlies snap a two-game skid with a 105-82 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday night.

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``The whole concept of the night was to exert our energy early,' Grizzlies guard Mike Conley said. ``Having a long East Coast road trip is never easy. We know exactly how they feel. Legs are tired. Minds are ready to get back home. We just wanted to come in and take advantage of it.'

Randolph connected on 12 of 18 shots from the field, and Memphis strengthened its hold on the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

``It wasn't really Zach as much, although he had an excellent game,' Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro said. ``It was everyone else just out-hustling us. Tony (Allen) was in passing lanes. I thought Conley got loose too much. It was our (19) turnovers and lack of offensive production that kind of fed into them in the open court.'

Sam Young finished with 14 points and Mike Conley had 13 for Memphis. Darrell Arthur chipped in 12 points and Greivis Vasquez scored a career-high 11.

Eric Bledsoe scored 19 points, Chris Kaman added 14 and Mo Williams 11 for the Clippers. Rookie forward Blake Griffin was limited to eight points and nine rebounds, his fourth straight game without reaching a double-double - the longest such drought for Griffin.

``Every loss is disappointing, but to lose the way we did was very disappointing,' Griffin said. ``I just never got into a rhythm personally. I missed some easy ones. We were just kind of out there.'

Los Angeles, on the road for five games because the Staples Center hosted the Pac-10 conference tournament, had stops in Charlotte, Boston, New Jersey and Washington before reaching Memphis. The fatigue showed as the Clippers trailed by 31 in the fourth quarter, their largest deficit of the season.

Los Angeles trailed by 31 in the fourth quarter, its largest deficit of the season, while Memphis rebounded from a 118-85 loss at Miami on Saturday, its largest losing deficit of the season.

``It was real important for us to get back on track,' Randolph said. ``We just had to flush that one down the toilet.'

The Grizzlies were never threatened after leading 21-20 at the end of the first quarter. Randolph dominated his matchup against Griffin with 21 points in the first half, capped by a 3-pointer in the waning seconds of the half to give Memphis a 50-36 lead at the break.

Meanwhile, Griffin missed five of his six shots in the half and managed only two points. He ended the night 4 of 10 from the field.

``I was pleased with our defensive intensity and focus early on, taking away Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan, and keeping the highlights to a minimum,' Shane Battier said.

Memphis extended the advantage by outscoring Los Angeles 29-16 in the second. The Clippers were 6 of 23 from the floor.

Williams had all of his 11 points at the break for Los Angeles, which shot 33 percent, including 2 of 10 from beyond the arc.

Memphis continued to expand the lead to as many as 25 with the Clippers struggling after halftime. The Grizzlies' advantage reached 78-56 entering the fourth.

When Memphis stretched it to 31, the Grizzlies settled in for the final minutes with the starters grabbing a seat.

``The schedule was kind to us,' Battier said. ``We caught a team on the last night of a long East Coast Road trip. They were looking to get home. We knew if we came out and just jumped on them early, you can get those teams thinking about the plane ride home and going home to see their girlfriend or their wife, and all that good stuff.'

Notes: The Grizzlies announced Monday night that F Rudy Gay's left shoulder continues to recover, but there is no timetable for his return. Gay injured the shoulder on Feb. 15 against Philly. ... Eric Gordon, the Clippers' leading scorer at 23.7 points a game, missed his fifth straight game with a right wrist injury. ... Memphis has not lost a home game to a sub-.500 team since Dec. 21 against the New Jersey Nets. ... The last Clippers win at Memphis was Feb. 6, 2009, when Randolph, then with Los Angeles, had 35 points and 10 rebounds. ... Clippers F Ryan Gomes left the game with a bruised right knee with 4:31 left in the third period and did not return.

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

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The Associated Press
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