|Memphis Grizzlies' Marc Gasol, left, of Spain, battles Phoenix Suns' Jared Dudley for the ball during the first quarter in an NBA basketball game on Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)|
Dudley shoots Suns past Grizzlies 86-84
Dudley finished with a season-high 20 points, Steve Nash added 21 and Marcin Gortat finished with 13 points and 12 rebounds for the Suns, who snapped a three-game losing streak.
Rudy Gay and Marc Gasol had 18 points each and Mike Conley added 15 for the Grizzlies, who have dropped three straight after a season-best seven-game winning streak.
The Grizzlies had a chance to win but Conley, coming off a screen by Gasol at the top right of the arc, missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer.
Nash collided with Gasol on the play and limped off the court.
Phoenix, which led by as many as 14 in the second half, was 8 for 8 from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter, led by Dudley's perfect 4-for-4 shooting.
The Suns took the lead for good midway in the first quarter and held a 63-56 advantage at the start of the fourth quarter. Memphis rallied to within two twice before finally tying the game at 82 on a driving layup by Dante Cunningham with 1:24 to go.
Gortat missed a desperation 22-footer as the shot clock expired and Cunningham missed a 20-footer on the other end. But on the rebound, Gasol hooked Dudley's right arm for a loose-ball foul, setting up the decisive two free throws.
Nash, appearing in his 700th career game in a Suns uniform, entered the contest needed 13 assists to become the franchise's career leader in the category but his scoring was needed more than his ball distribution.
Nash finished 8 of 14 from the field and added two of the Suns' five 3-pointers.
Notes: Gortat has 11 straight games with double-digit rebounds, the longest active streak in the NBA and the second-longest streak of the season. ... Phoenix is 4-1 when Dudley scores 15 or more points. ... Memphis finished its four-game road trip 1-4. ... The Suns won at home for the first time since Jan. 8.