With JaMychal Green, Mike Conley Jr., Andrew Harrison, Chandler Parsons and Wayne Selden Jr. all out due to injuries, on top of Tyreke Evans and Mario Chalmers mysteriously sidelined, the Grizzlies struggled to say the least. To put their struggles in perspective, Anthony Davis, Jrue Holiday, E’Twaun Moore and Nikola Mirotic outscored the Grizzlies alone while combining for 98 points.
Moore scored a game-high 30 points and made a career-high seven three-pointers. Every time the Pelicans needed a bucket to stem a small Memphis run or for the Pelicans to widen their lead, Moore provided throughout the night.
“It was good, you know, made some shots,” said Moore. “Teammates did a good job fanning it. Jrue (Holiday) and (Rajon) Rondo did a good job penetrating and kicking out, made shots, and helped us win. I mean every win is important so it’s pretty cool.”
Davis, who seemed to be limited the last two games due to the lingering effects of a right ankle injury, looked be in good shape, posting 28 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks. He noted in postgame media the importance of setting the tone early.
“Yeah, I was trying to get back to how I was playing, get the team back,” stated Davis. “I know they feed off my energy, so just try to come out with a lot of energy on both ends of the floor and try to lead us to a win.”
Mirotic played with his clean-shaven face for the first time and posted 25 points along with seven rebounds. He missed just two shots out of 12 attempts, and it seemed getting him several easy looks from in close might have made the difference.
“I was talking to Rajon (Rondo) and Jrue (Holiday) to try to get into the game to try and get an easy play for me to get a lay-up, maybe get my head in the game,” said Mirotic. “I really felt all the time their confidence, they really have confidence in me. So that was really important for me and that confidence they have in me is for me to play better.”
However, the night wasn’t entirely filled with positives. Guard Ian Clark was forced to leave the game late in the second quarter after suffering a right ankle injury. Although X-Rays came back negative, Head Coach Alvin Gentry said that Clark is going to be day-to-day moving forward and will undergo an MRI on Thursday.
Four games are left to play, and as of now, the Pelicans remain the eight-seed in the Western Conference. New Orleans currently holds a one-game edge over the ninth placed Denver Nuggets (43-35).
The next one on the slate for New Orleans is on the road against the Phoenix Suns on Friday at 9 p.m. The Pelicans are 2-0 against Phoenix, who sport the worst record in the league at 20-59.