- Pete Wickham Special to the AJC
MEMPHIS – For the second time in two nights, the Hawks found themselves matched against a team as thirsty for a victory. And once again, Atlanta left the floor with parched lips, allowing the free-falling Grizzlies to rally for a 96-94 victory Friday night at FedEx Forum.
The Grizzlies, as they had done all night, chipped away at Hawk leads, the last an 89-81 advantage. Mario Chalmers hit a pair of threes and a layup, the second three making it a 94-all game with 1:44 to play. Taurean Prince missed a 10-footer and Tyreke Evans broke the tie with a layup with 1:03 left.
Dennis Schroeder missed a jumper, but Kent Bazemore stole the ball from Grizzlies’ All-Star center Marc Gasol with 9.43 seconds left. Atlanta, however, missed on three-point tries by Ersan Ilyasova and Bazemore on the final possession, and the Hawks went down to their sixth loss in seven starts and fell to 6-23.
Bazemore led the Hawks with 19 points. Schroeder had 18 points and 11 assists, but shot 5-of-18 from the floor. Prince had 17 points and Marco Bellinielli added 14.
Evans led the Grizzlies with 22 points, including 4-of-5 three-point tries. Chalmers had 16 off the bench. Gasol had all 13 of his points in the third quarter, when the Grizzlies pared a 12-point Hawk lead to 73-72. Andrew Harrison had 10 points, and hit all three of his shots from beyond the arc.
It snapped a five-game losing streak for Memphis, which after a 7-4 start has gone 2-16 without injured point guard Mike Conley.
The Hawks, who lost a 105-91 home decision to Detroit Thursday, will be back at Philips Arena Monday against Miami.