ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- The Memphis Grizzlies found out things are
a lot better when you hit shots.
The Grizzlies, who shot only 34 percent in their season-opening
loss, warmed up nicely on a visit to Florida, hitting 47 percent
from the field, including 10 3-pointers, in a 94-85 victory over
the Orlando Magic on Friday night.
Eddie Jones hit five 3-pointers and scored 25 points to get the
Grizzlies' offense untracked and Pau Gasol had nine of his 22
points in the fourth quarter to spark Memphis to its first win this
"We just executed a lot better than we did in the opener,"
Memphis coach Mike Fratello said. "Eddie (Jones) was hot for
awhile and Pau answered some big hoops when we had to have them in
the fourth quarter."
The Grizzlies' improved shooting helped their defense.
"I think we all put a lot of pressure on ourselves the other
night and when we didn't make shots, we stopped playing defense,"
Jones said. "That hurt us, but it didn't happen (against the
Magic). We still have a lot of room to improve."
The Grizzlies did get past a frightening moment late in the
third quarter when Shane Battier sustained a large cut across the
top of his head after an inadvertent elbow from Magic center Kelvin
Battier pump-faked Cato into the air, then jumped right into the
Magic center's elbow trying to get a shot off. A pool of blood
quickly formed on Battier's head and he needed eight stitches to
close the wound.
He returned for the final 2:39 of the game and finished with 13
points and four rebounds.
"Shane is a tough guy, but I think all that blood made it look
worse than it really was," teammate Damon Stoudamire said. "He
just got hit in a bad spot."
The Magic struggled to sustain any offense throughout the game.
They had spurts of production in both halves, but each was
"I didn't like our offensive execution at all," Magic coach
Brian Hill said. "I didn't expect us to come flying out of the
gate to start the season, but I have faith in these guys. We've got
to work harder and execute better at the offensive end."
Francis blamed the trouble on "over-thinking."
"Everybody is trying to be real precise and that's causing us
too many mistakes," he said.
The Grizzlies took control in the middle of the fourth quarter
after Orlando had gotten within 72-70 on two free throws by Cato.
Gasol hit consecutive jump shots and Jones made a 3 and Memphis
gradually pulled away.
Neither team could sustain an offensive run in the first half
that ended with Memphis in front 43-40.
The Magic hit seven of their first eight shots from the field,
but struggled after that. Francis had 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting
and was the only Orlando player in double figures at halftime.
Battier sparked an 11-2 run that gave Memphis a 65-56 lead with
1:39 left in the third quarter. The forward started the rally with
a three-point play and finished it with two free throws after
running into Cato's elbow.
The Magic activated C Mario Kasun and put F Pat Garrity on
the inactive list before the game. ... Memphis was 10-of-22 on
3-pointers after going 4-of-17 in the opener. ... The Magic were
only 1-of-10 from 3-point territory. ... Magic C Tony Battie had
six of his team-high seven rebounds in the first quarter. ... The
Grizzlies presented C Lorenzen Wright with a birthday cake before
the game. He turned 30.