Grizzlies Down Hawks In OT


After finding hundreds of ways to lose in their first four seasons, the Vancouver Grizzlies are finally learning how to win.

Shareef Abdur-Rahim had 20 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists as the Grizzlies beat the Atlanta Hawks for the first time, 102-97 in overtime Wednesday night.

Othella Harrington had 21 points and 12 rebounds for the Grizzlies, who had been 0-7 against the Hawks. Vancouver improved to 2-2 with its second straight win.

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  • "All the wins mean a lot," said Abdur-Rahim. "They're confidence boosters. We're starting to feel good about ourselves, we're starting to feel like we should win games."

    Abdur-Rahim fell one assist short of his second career triple-double.

    "We're getting older and showing more mental and physical toughness. That's all there is," he said.

    Michael Dickerson's 3-pointer and Mike Bibby 18-foot jumper gave the Grizzlies a 98-93 lead with 2:05 left in overtime.

    Alan Henderson's second straight basket cut Vancouver's lead to 98-97 with 38 seconds left in overtime, but Bibby hit two free throws with 10.2 seconds remaining to give the Grizzlies a three-point cushion.

    Bibby was poked in the face by Henderson and rubbed his eye, but made the fouls shots anyway.

    The Hawks had a chance to tie, but Bimbo Coles missed a 3-point shot. Abdur-Rahim grabbed the rebound, was fouled and made the free throws to clinch the win before 11,453 fans, the smallest crowd in the Grizzlies' five-year history.

    Dickerson scored 19 points for Vancouver, which got all but six points from its starters.

    Coles scored 20 points and Chris Crawford matched a career-high with 18 points for the Hawks, who fell to 1-4.

    Atlanta center Dikembe Mutombo played only three minutes in the first half because of foul trouble.

    Mutombo, who finished with only seven points in 32 minutes, blamed his foul problems on the NBA's new rules cracking down on excessive contact.

    "You've got to do something with these new rules," he said. "It's no fun out there. ... It hurts the game, and I'm going to speak about it all year long."

    "You can get kids from high school to play in the NBA right now, even from elementary school. As long as they can dribble and to the basket, nobody can touch them. It's a foul."

    It was a sloppy game. The Grizzlies committed 20 turnovers that led to 29 Hawks' points. Atlanta gave up 14 points on 15 turnovers.

    The Hawks also went 7 1/2 minutes without a field goal in the fourth quarter, scoring only six points over that stretch all from the line.

    But the Grizzlies didn't shoot much better, scoring just nine points over that span to build an 86-83 lead.

    Abdur-Rahim tied the game 91-91 when he made one of two free throws with 7.6 seconds left in regulation. Coles missed a 17-foot jumper at the buzzer, sending the game into overtime.

    "This is a big win," said center Bryant Reeves, the only Vancouver player left from the franchise's first season. "Hopefully, this win builds a little confidence."

    Notes

  • In their three previous wins at GM Place, the Hawks beat the Grizzlies by an average of 15 points.
  • In their first three games this season, Vancouver's starters scored 220 of the team's 283 points.
  • After holding opponents to an average of 83 points last season, the Hawks are giving up 106 points per game this year.

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