Kissimmee, Fla. – The Memphis Hustle, the Grizzlies’ NBA G League affiliate, cruised to a 119-103 win over the Agua Caliente Clippers inside AdventHealth Arena on Monday night. The Memphis bench unit combined for 70 points while knocking down 12 3-pointers to spark the team’s offense.
The Hustle got off to a strong start to the game behind Grizzlies’ two-way Sean McDermott, who scored seven points in the first nine minutes of action. Memphis scored 14 points in the paint in the first quarter on their way to a 28-23 lead after 12 minutes of play. Memphis stretched their lead to as many as 17 points at 46-29 following an 18-6 run in the first 4:30 to start the second quarter. However, the Hustle went cold from behind-the-arc in the second quarter (4-of-13), allowing the Clippers to climb back into the game. Agua Caliente ripped off a 12-2 run to trim the Memphis lead to 56-51 heading to the break. Malik Fitts and Jordan Ford led all scorers in the first half with 13 points apiece for Agua Caliente.
Both teams traded baskets to start the third quarter before the Clippers pulled ahead 67-66 with 6:35 to play in the third, giving them their first lead since 11-10 with 6:47 in the first quarter. The Hustle were able to regain the lead at 85-81 heading into the fourth quarter following four quick points from Jontay Porter in the final 43.4 seconds of the third period. The Hustle led 101-94 with 5:21 to play in the fourth before Shaq Buchanan and McDermott combined to score 15 of the final 27 points of the game. Memphis shot 61.9 percent from the field and 71.4 percent from three as they cruised to the 16-point victory. The Hustle’s second-unit had four players score at least 12 points and three assists.
McDermott totaled 21 points (8-16 FG, 3-8 3P), two rebounds and two assists in 31 minutes. Buchanan finished with 19 points, five rebounds and one assist on 7-of-12 shooting. Ahmad Caver added 18 points, five assists and four rebounds on 8-of-12 shooting. Freddie Gillespie posted a double-double with 14 points, 10 rebounds and four assists to help lift Memphis to (4-8) on the season.
Jordan Ford totaled a game-high 23 points (8-13 FG), two assists and one rebound in 30 minutes off the bench for Agua Caliente. Fitts pitched in 20 points, four rebounds and two assists in 34 minutes. James Palmer Jr. scored 15 points while grabbing eight rebounds and dishing four assists on 5-of-8 shooting. Amir Coffey totaled 12 points, four assists and three rebounds as the Clippers fell to (3-9).
The Hustle return to action on Tomorrow, Mar. 2, against the Westchester Knicks at 6:30 p.m. CT inside HP Field House. Fans can watch the game on GrindCityMedia.com.