The surprisingly resurgent Memphis Grizzlies headed to Oregon on Tuesday night riding a seven-game winning steak. The Portland Trail Blazers were more than up to the challenge, however, picking up the 97-84 win to improve to 8-1 at home. The Blazers remain one of the toughest teams in the NBA to beat at home, as this season they have been nearly automatic at the Rose Garden.
Memphis and Portland were knotted 25-25 after the first quarter, but the next two frames proved to be the difference. The Blazers outscored the Grizzlies 22-18 in the second quarter and 23-13 in the third. LaMarcus Aldridge led all scorers with 23 points. Center Marcus Camby snagged 22 rebounds and had five blocks. O.J. Mayo led Grizzlies scorers with 20 points. Rudy Gay's 11 points made him the only other Memphis players to reach double digits in scoring.
The Grizzlies are now 4-5 on the road with a 10-7 record, putting them a half-game out of first place in the Southwest Division behind the San Antonio Spurs and the Dallas Mavericks. The Houston Rockets have an identical 10-7 record, meaning that four teams in the division are within half a game of one another. The New Orleans Hornets are teh odd team out in the division, with a woeful 3-14 record.
The Trail Blazers are 11-7 following the win, but in the stacked Northwest Division, that's only good for fourth place and 3.5 games in back of the first-place Oklahoma City Thunder.