Brandon Ingram, Zion Williamson and Eric Bledsoe each scored more than 20 points as the host New Orleans Pelicans defeated the Memphis Grizzlies 118-109 on Saturday night.
Williamson scored 29, Ingram had 27 points and 12 rebounds and Bledsoe added 21 points and led a fourth-quarter surge as the Pelicans won their third straight, a first this season, and claimed their fifth victory in the last seven games. Lonzo Ball added 16 points.
The Pelicans, playing on a back-to-back after a 114-113 victory at Indiana on Friday, won the first meeting this season against the Grizzlies, who they swept in three meetings last season.
Jonas Valanciunas returned from a five-game absence after a bout with COVID-19 to score 23, Kyle Anderson added 21 and Ja Morant had 16 to lead the Grizzlies, who lost their third straight.
Bledsoe scored the first six points of the third quarter to give New Orleans a 66-61 lead.
The Pelicans led by five on three more occasions before Morant led a surge by Memphis. His layup and two free throws gave the Grizzlies a 78-75 lead.
The lead changed hands twice more before Memphis held a 91-90 advantage at the end of the third quarter.
Tyus Jones scored six points as the Grizzlies expanded the lead to 102-95.
Bledsoe answered with 11 points as New Orleans took a 113-104 lead with 2:13 remaining.
Ball made 3 of 4 3-pointers to help New Orleans to a 13-8 lead.
Memphis heated up from beyond the arc midway through the first quarter and Xavier Tillman’s 3-pointer tied the score at 23.
The Pelicans took a 31-27 lead before Valanciunas converted a three-point play and made a 3-pointer to give the Grizzlies a 33-31 lead at the end of the period. Valanciunas had 13 points and Memphis made seven 3-pointers.
The Grizzlies needed just one 3-pointer to increase their lead to 49-37 early in the second quarter.
New Orleans used an 11-0 run to briefly take the lead before Anderson made two free throws to grab a 61-60 halftime lead for Memphis.