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04/14/2014 12:45 AM EDT
Grizzlies beat Lakers 102-90; stay in playoff hunt
MEMPHIS 102, LA LAKERS 90

By BETH HARRIS
AP Sports Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- After a rough start to the season, Mike
Conley was thinking of winning some games, not making the
playoffs.

What a difference a few months has made.

The Memphis Grizzlies beat the Los Angeles Lakers 102-90 on
Sunday night to move a game ahead of idle Phoenix in the race
for the final Western Conference playoff berth.

"It's amazing we're in this position," said Conley, who scored
24 points.

Marc Gasol added 18 points and 15 rebounds and Mike Miller had
13 points for the Grizzlies, who head to Phoenix for a showdown
with the Suns on Monday night.

"They're playing very well," Conley said of the Suns. "These are
the games we get up for."

The Grizzlies are 2-0 against the Suns this season, winning by
19 points at home and by eight in Phoenix.

"It's going to be a good test to go to Phoenix and play a team
that is fighting for the same goal and can get hot really
quick," Gasol said.

Jodie Meeks led the Lakers with 20 points in their last home
game of a miserable season that has included a franchise-worst
55 losses with two games remaining.

"It's just a tough year," Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni said.
"Obviously it went off the rails when everybody was going down
with injuries and trades and different things. Management will
be on it this summer to get a good roster. They'll do a good job
and hopefully people will stay well and then we'll see what
happens."

The Lakers lost their seventh in a row overall and fifth
straight at Staples Center. Wesley Johnson added 15 points and
15 rebounds, and Jordan Hill had 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Tied at 61 in the third, the Grizzlies pulled away on a 26-8 run
to lead 87-69 going into the fourth. Conley scored six points,
Tayshaun Prince had seven and Gasol added six in the spurt that
produced their first double-digit lead of the game. Memphis shot
68 percent in the period.

"I don't know how many stops in a row we had at the end of the
third, but we came out and guarded," Gasol said. "We were
pressuring the ball, we got on our defensive lines, and we
rebounded. That most times takes care of a lot of things."

Nick Young, who finished with 14 points off the bench, had the
Lakers' only field goal over the final 5 1/2 minutes of the
third, when they shot 29 percent and were outrebounded 14-6.

Memphis led by 22 points early in the fourth, when the Lakers
got no closer than 12.

"This was a good sign on how we finished out the game," Prince
said. "I hope we can carry it over to tomorrow."

The Lakers kept it close in the first half, leading by nine
before trailing 53-52 at the break.

Notes: Gasol hugged his brother Pau after the game; Pau has been
out for the Lakers with vertigo. ... The Grizzlies improved to
22-18 on the road overall and 13-12 against West opponents away
from home. ... After traveling to Phoenix, the Grizzlies end the
regular season at Dallas, which is a half-game ahead of Memphis
for the seventh seed. ... As has been his custom lately, injured
Kobe Bryant wasn't on the bench during the game. ... Young
addressed the crowd before the game, thanking fans for "sticking
in with us and supporting us all season long."... The Lakers end
the season with games at Utah and San Antonio.

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