Trail Blazers drop fifth straight

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Memphis Grizzlies are continuing their winning ways headed into the postseason even if the recent performances aren't exactly stellar.

The Grizzlies almost let a 12-point lead evaporate in the final 4 minutes before holding on for their fourth straight victory, defeating the Portland Trail Blazers 93-89 on Saturday night.

Rudy Gay scored 21 points and had a key block in the final seconds to preserve the Memphis victory as the Trail Blazers scored 10 straight points down the stretch. Gay, who was 9 of 16 from the field, turned away Wesley Matthews' 3-point attempt with about 5 seconds left to seal the win and send the short-handed Trail Blazers to their fifth straight loss.

It marked the second straight night Memphis has struggled against a sub-.500 team. The Grizzlies had to battle in the fourth quarter Friday night before winning 85-80 at Charlotte.

"Sometimes, we play to the level of our opponents," said Memphis center Marc Gasol, who had 12 points. "If we play a good team, we play a lot better. If we play the not-so-good teams, we play to their level. That's a part of the process of getting better and being a good team. At least, we get up at the end and realize that we've actually got to win."

O.J. Mayo scored 14 points for Memphis, Marreese Speights had 13 points and 11 rebounds and Dante Cunningham finished with 12 points.

"Right now, we're just trying to continue to build and get better for these playoff runs," Cunningham said. "Just trying to sharpen all our tools and make sure everything is right going into the playoffs."

J.J. Hickson had 23 points and 13 rebounds to lead Portland, while Jamal Crawford had 21 points despite going 5 of 13 from the field, part of the Trail Blazers' 37 percent shooting for the game. Matthews had 16 points and Luke Babbitt added 10.

Hickson's performance continued a nice run for the fourth-year forward out of North Carolina State. He entered the game averaging 14.4 points and 7.9 rebounds in the 14 games since he was signed off waivers by the Blazers on March 21.

The win kept Memphis' hopes alive to try to reach the fourth seed in the Western Conference that would mean homecourt advantage in the first round. The Grizzlies moved within a half-game of the idle Los Angeles Clippers, who hold the fourth spot.

Wizards 86, Heat 84

At Miami, LeBron James and Chris Bosh sat out the game, resting for the postseason. Dwyane Wade played and got hurt.

Wade lasted less than 3 minutes before dislocating his left index finger, and without their three stars, the Heat lost to the woeful Washington Wizards.

There was no immediate estimate as to how long Wade might be out.

Bulls 93, Mavericks 83

At Chicago, Luol Deng scored 22 points, Richard Hamilton added 19 and the Bulls held off a fourth-quarter rally to beat the Mavericks.

Bulls star guard Derrick Rose returned to the lineup after sitting out three games with a right foot/ankle injury and he had 11 points with eight assists in 32 minutes.

Nuggets 118, Suns 107

At Phoenix, Ty Lawson went 5 of 5 on 3-pointers and had 29 points and 10 assists to lead Denver to a victory over the Suns that clinched a playoff berth for the Nuggets.

Steve Nash of the Suns had 13 assists, nine in the first quarter, and passed Oscar Robertson into fifth place on the NBA's career list. The Suns lost Channing Frye to a shoulder injury in the second quarter.

Rockets 99, Warriors 96

At Houston, Courtney Lee scored 20 points, Goran Dragic added 18 points and seven assists and the Rockets snapped a six-game losing streak with a win over the Warriors.

Luis Scola had 13 points and Chase Budinger added 11 for the Rockets, who came into the game in the 10th spot in the Western Conference, one game behind Utah and Phoenix.

Bucks 106, Nets 95

At Milwaukee, Brandon Jennings scored 30 points to lead the Bucks to a victory over the Nets that kept their slim playoff hopes alive.

Jennings, who hit three straight 3-pointers late in the game, was 9 of 18 from the field and finished with six rebounds, six assists and four steals.

76ers 109, Pacers 106, OT

At Indianapolis, Elton Brand scored 20 points and Lou Williams added 19 to help the 76ers beat the Pacers in overtime, stopping Indiana's winning streak at seven games.

Jrue Holiday scored 17 points and Andre Iguodala added 16 for the 76ers.

Jazz 117, Magic 107, OT

At Salt Lake City, Devin Harris scored 21 points and had a key block that forced overtime to help the Jazz defeat the Magic and keep their lock on the final Western Conference playoff spot.

The Magic (36-27) dropped their second straight and first since All-Star center Dwight Howard had back surgery that will keep him out until next season.

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