Wolves can't complete comeback in four-point loss to Grizzlies
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Zach Randolph had 26 points and 12 rebounds and the Memphis Grizzlies overcame another strong effort by Kevin Love to beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 94-90 Friday night.
Courtney Lee added 15 points for the Grizzlies, who have won five straight games and 10 of their last 11. The Grizzlies have won six straight on the road.
Playing on a sore left ankle throughout the second half, Love led Minnesota with 28 points and 16 rebounds. Kevin Martin had 14 points for the Timberwolves, who lost for just the second time in seven games.
Randolph came up clutch late, scoring six points during a 9-2 Memphis run that turned a one-point deficit into a 91-85 lead with 59.6 seconds to play.
With Minnesota trailing by one, Love scored on a fadeaway jumper and on a layup after a feed from J.J. Barea for an 83-80 lead midway through the fourth quarter.
Memphis played the final 6:37 without starting guard Mike Conley, who was helped to the dressing room after injuring his right ankle when he landed on Barea's foot. Conley had 12 points on 4-of-14 shooting after scoring a combined 46 in his last two outings.
Love hurt his left ankle when he collided with Marc Gasol on a drive with 2 minutes to play in the first half and landed on the foot of another Memphis player, yet gutted it out until halftime.
The gimping was gone to start the second half much to the dismay of Memphis.
Trailing 59-43 early in the third quarter, Love scored 14 points during an 18-4 run to get Minnesota within two. His jumper with 12.8 seconds left in the quarter gave Minnesota its first lead of the game at 67-66. Love outscored the Grizzlies 18-14 in the frame.
Early on, Memphis took advantage of Minnesota playing its second straight game without bruising center Nikola Pekovic, who is out indefinitely with bursitis in his right ankle. Memphis had 36 points in the paint in the first half, and finished with 56.
Gasol and Lee each had nine points in the first quarter as the Grizzlies shot 63.6 percent from the field, and had 22 points in the paint in building a 30-22 lead.
A putback by Randolph and a two-handed dunk by Ed Davis off a Minnesota turnover increased Memphis' lead to 42-28 midway through the second quarter.
Minnesota's 37 first-half points were a season low. ... Memphis F Mike Miller, who was questionable after spraining his right thumb Wednesday, finished with five points. ... Minnesota's Gorgui Dieng blocked Davis twice in a 58-second span early in second. ... Both teams play Saturday: Memphis at home against Milwaukee and Minnesota at Atlanta. ... Memphis coach David Joerger grew up in Staples, Minn.© The Associated Press