CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The preseason matchup between two of the NBA’s top young point guards turned out to be a mismatch.
Ja Morant had 16 points, eight assists, five rebounds and two blocks in less than 24 minutes of action, helping the Memphis Grizzlies to a 128-98 rout of LaMelo Ball and the Charlotte Hornets on Thursday night. Ball, the NBA rookie of the year last season, struggled with his shot finishing with 13 points on 5-of-17 shooting.
Desmond Bane added 19 points and new Grizzlies center Steven Adams dominated the paint with 15 points and 16 rebounds against a Hornets team that played without starters Gordon Hayward and Mason Plumlee due to health and safety protocols and top reserve Kelly Oubre, who sat out with a sprained right ankle.
Terry Rozier finished with 21 points to lead the Hornets, while rookie James Bouknight added 17 points.