MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Dillon Brooks scored 24 points, Jonas Valanciunas had 23 points and 12 rebounds, and the Memphis Grizzlies beat the Denver Nuggets 104-96 Tuesday night for their third straight win.
Ja Morant had 14 points and Brandon Clarke finished with 12 as Memphis led from start to finish. Jaren Jackson Jr. had 10 points and blocked a career-high seven shots.
Denver’s Nikola Jokic had 25 points and and 13 rebounds for his 22nd double-double in 28 games. Jerami Grant had 21 points, including 13 in the fourth quarter as the Nuggets tried to cut into Memphis’ lead.
For the most part, they were unsuccessful. Memphis held a 16-point edge near the midway point of the fourth quarter as Valanciunas provided a burst with seven straight points. Denver crafted a short rally but could not get closer than seven points in the closing minute.
Memphis dominated the paint, outscoring the Nuggets 76-22 in the lane. Memphis’ defense held the Nuggets to under 38% from both the field and 3-point range, and Denver was held under 100 points for the first time in 25 games.
The Grizzlies extended their lead to 19 early in the third quarter by beating the Nuggets down the floor. Memphis outscored Denver 19-16 in the low-octane period, but the Grizzlies still held an 82-66 lead heading to the fourth.
Memphis shot 62% in the first half, including 4 of 8 from 3-point range.
Nuggets: Played without Jamal Murray (left ankle sprain), Paul Millsap (left knee contusion) and Mason Plumlee (right cuboid injury). … Denver’s 24-game string of 100-plus-point games was the longest since a 38-game run in 1990-91 . … Rookie Michael Porter Jr. was held to eight points. He had reached double figures in seven straight games in which he played.
Grizzlies: Jae Crowder and Grayson Allen were out for the Grizzlies. … De’Anthony Melton was a late scratch because of a sore left hand. … Have won 11 of 13 home games.