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Roy, Trail Blazers escape in close shave over Grizzlies

Feb 19, 2009 - 6:59 AM PORTLAND, Oregon (Ticker) -- Brandon Roy has gotten used to coming up big in the fourth quarter. He did it again on Wednesday.

The two-time All-Star scored seven points in the final 4 1/2 minutes, including a pair of game-clinching free throws with three seconds on the clock, to lead the Portland Trail Blazers to a 94-90 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies.

"I felt like I was in good rhythm, but we didn't quit," Roy said. "We know one more win, one more step closer to where we're trying to get."

Memphis, which has now dropped three straight, kept it close for most of the contest, but couldn't quite keep up. Rudy Gay's free throw with 4:50 to play gave the Grizzlies a two-point edge, but the Blazers responded with five straight points. Roy buried a jumper, drained a technical free throw and assisted on Travis Outlaw's bucket to put Portland back on top.

"Nothing is going to be easy, we've got to play hard," Roy said. "That's the only way we're gonna get to be a playoff team."

With the Grizzlies back to within two and 1:23 on the clock, Roy cut inside and dropped in a layup. Memphis came away empty on its next two possessions, but Portland returned the favor and the Grizzlies finally got back on the board with O.J. Mayo's jumper with five seconds remaining.

Forced to intentionally foul, the Grizzlies snagged Roy immediately after an inbounds pass, but the Blazers' star sank both foul shots to put the game away.

"I don't know if it was turnovers or anything, but they just made plays," Memphis coach Lionel Hollins said. "We took the lead and they came back and made a big play. We missed a couple shots and that's just the game of basketball. You're proud that you're in the game and have a chance to win."

Roy finished with 24 points and nine assists.

Earlier in the night, the Blazers looked like they could run away with it as they engineered a 20-5 run in the second quarter to seize control. Travis Outlaw kicked things off with four straight points and Rudy Fernandez and Sergio Rodriguez followed with consecutive 3-pointer to push the lead into double digits.

Mayo responded with a 3-pointer of his own, but the Blazers continued to pile on. They capped the spurt in style, as Roy found Fernandez streaking to the basket for a dunk to extend the lead to 50-34.

"Our guys, I thought we had a lot of energy the first half," Blazers coach Nate McMillan said. "The second half, that second win just never came for us. But defensively we were able to hold, and eventually win the game."

However, Portland lost that momentum almost as quickly as it had taken it. The Grizzlies stormed back in the waning minutes of the first half, closing the second quarter on a 13-3 run, highlighted by a pair of buckets from Mayo - including one from long range.

The Blazers pushed their lead back to nine in the third quarter, but by the end of the period, it was a one-possession ballgame again.

"Being our first game back, it took us a little bit to catch our second win," Roy said. "We give them credit, they didn't quit."

Rudy Gay led the Grizzlies with 20 points, while Mayo added 19 on 8-of-18 shooting. Mike Conley collected 15 and 10 assists.

Memphis hurt itself at the foul line, where it went just 12-of-20 as a unit. Portland was 15-of-18.

"A call here a call there, we might have pulled it out and got a lead early," Hollins said. "That's just the game of basketball. They earned the win, and we made them earn it."