Suns at Grizzlies
Tayshaun Prince had a nice debut for the Memphis Grizzlies, a team that needed a pick-me-up after losing big in its first game after trading leading scorer Rudy Gay. The Grizzlies will look to make it two straight with Prince in the lineup when they host the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday. Prince, who came in the three-team trade that sent Gay to Toronto, scored 14 points -- including two big late baskets -- in an 85-76 win over Washington on Friday.
The Suns have lost four of their last five, the defeats coming by an average of 13.5 points. The most lopsided of those results came Saturday at Golden State, where Phoenix was severely outplayed in the second half of a 113-93 loss. That left the Suns stuck on four road wins, fewest in the Western Conference. Including the Warriors game, Phoenix plays seven out of eight games on the road, with the only home game coming against defending conference champs Oklahoma City.
TV: 8 p.m. ET, Fox Sports Arizona (Phoenix), SportSouth (Memphis)
ABOUT THE SUNS (16-32): Michael Beasley was rather active off the bench in the loss to Golden State. He had 24 points on a season-high 23 shots, continuing to play a bigger role in the Phoenix attack. Beasley has topped 20 points in three of his last five games after doing so just once in his previous 18 games. However, he has shown remarkable inconsistency in the process -- in the two games in which he failed to reach 20 points during that stretch, Beasley scored a total of 16 points on 6-of-23 shooting (26.1 percent).
ABOUT THE GRIZZLIES (30-16): Already a team that relied heavily on its defense and rebounding, the Grizzlies turned to those trademarks one game after shipping away Gay. Only one Washington player scored in double figures and the Wizards were dominated in the paint, as Memphis posted a 46-31 advantage on the boards and got to the line 14 more times. Point guard Mike Conley may be assuming more of a scoring load without Gay. Conley is averaging 17.5 points and has taken 34 shots since Gay left.
1. The Grizzlies have made the fewest 3-pointers in the NBA. Only one team (Minnesota) has a worse 3-point percentage than the Suns (32.9).
2. Phoenix is 1-10 on the road against the Western Conference.
3. Memphis is in the midst of a stretch in which it plays five of six games at home. After that comes 10 out of 14 games on the road.
PREDICTION: Memphis 88, Phoenix 76.