Dec. 12, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA: Phoenix Suns guard Goran Dragic (1) celebrates with Jared Dudley after hitting the game winning basket in the final second of the game against the Memphis Grizzlies at the US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Grzzlies 82-80. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Streak Is Over! Suns 82 – Grizzlies 80


Dec. 12, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA: Phoenix Suns guard Goran Dragic (1) celebrates with Jared Dudley after hitting the game winning basket in the final second of the game against the Memphis Grizzlies at the US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Grzzlies 82-80. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

How about that lay-up by the Dragon named Goran? Wow, unbelievable. The Phoenix Suns(8-15) at last snapped their 7 game losing streak by beating the Memphis Grizzlies(14-5) in an 82-80 win on Wednesday night. As time was running out in regulation, Goran Dragic hit the game winning underhanded lay-up with 0.5 left to go in the ball game.

“Last time, I missed the easy layup against Dallas, so this time, I told myself you have to make that one,” Dragic said. “The play was improve for me. I play pick-and-roll and take that last shot.”

What a great win for the Suns! What makes this win so significant is the fact that not only did the Suns snap their 7 game losing streak against a good team but also they did their job defensively which is what ultimately led them to the victory.

The Suns shot only 38.2% from the field last night versus the Grizzlies’ 45.2%. The Suns gave up 27 points in the opening quarter but held Memphis to only 53 points in the final three. The Suns also did a tremendous job containing the Grizzlies’ twin towers Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph, the duo combined for 33 points, and 12 rebounds compared to 52 points and 31 rebounds the last time these two teams met.

Goran Dragic was the hero for the Suns on Wednesday night and it was Dragic who ignited the comeback coming out of the second half. After both sides each scoring a basket in the opening minutes of the 3rd quarter the score was set at 48-45 in favor of Memphis.

Dragic would tie the game at 48-48 with a 3-point but Memphis pushed it’s lead to 52-48 with buckets from Rudy Gay and Zach Randolph. Dragic would then respond with two back to back buckets of his own and a nifty transition assist to Jared Dudley for lay-up and the Suns had the lead for the first time since the opening quarter as they led Memphis 54-52 with 8:03 left in the third period.

Dec. 12, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA: Memphis Grizzlies forward Rudy Gay (22) controls the ball under pressure from Phoenix Suns forward P.J. Tucker in the second half at the US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Grizzlies 82-80. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Heading into the final period of play the score was tied at 63. In a 4th quarter that featured 9 lead changes and 3 ties, it obviously was a neck and neck race all the way down to the wire. The Suns led 80-76 with 4:05 left to go in the ball game after a Marcin Gortat lefty-hook shot, but the Suns would go the next 4:04.5 seconds without a score.

Memphis tied the game on two Rudy Gay buckets, one of which came with 46 seconds left as Gay hit a turnaround jumper over Dudley. After a Suns timeout Jared Dudley missed a long 20-footer that was half way down but spun out and Memphis had the ball with 36 seconds left in the contest but they wouldn’t be able to captialize as Rudy Gay missed a free throw line jumper with 8 seconds left.

After a Markieff Morris rebounded with 7 seconds remaining in the contest, the Suns would advance the ball into the front court after the timeout and they’d get the ball to Goran Dragic and the Dragon made magic happen in the valley of the Suns.

Alvin Gentry made yet another line-up change in this game replacing Markieff Morris with Luis Scola. The Suns will play their next 3 games at home in Phoenix against the Jazz, Kings and Bobcats.

 

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