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Pelicans keep playoff dreams alive with big win over Grizzlies

Zion Williamson played 25 minutes, closing out the game for the first time since the season restarted.
Credit: AP
New Orleans Pelicans' Zion Williamson (1) comes down after a dunk over Memphis Grizzlies' Anthony Tolliver (44) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Aug. 3, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis, Pool)

NEW ORLEANS — The Pelicans earned their first and arguably most important win in the NBA bubble against the Grizzlies Monday night.

The Pelicans beat the Grizzlies 109-99 Monday night, keeping their playoff hopes alive. The Grizzlies currently hold the 8th and final playoff spot for the Western Conference, but this win gives the Pelicans a fighting chance to take it.

Zion Williamson played 25 minutes and put up 23 points along with 7 rebounds and 5 assists. That’s the most playing time Zion has gotten so far in Orlando and for the first time it included the game’s final minutes.

“I felt alive again,” he said after the game. “Our competitive spirit was there. I’m glad coach and the whole team trusted me to finish the game out.”

Brandon Ingram led the Pelicans with 24 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists.

The Grizzlies rookie phenom Ja Morant had a quiet night. Jrue Holiday and Lonzo Ball hounded him on defense, holding the potential Rookie of the Year to just 11 points and 8 assists. Memphis big man Jaren Jackson Jr. led the Grizzlies with 22 points.

Next up for the Pelicans are the Sacramento Kings Thursday afternoon at 12:30 p.m.

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