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- New Orleans enters tonight’s game at Memphis with a 1-3 record after Tuesday night’s 104-98 loss to Phoenix. But Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger is still expecting the Pelicans to give the Grizzlies a battle tonight. All he has to do is look at the talent in the starting lineup, which features all-star point guard Jrue Holiday, Eric Gordon and Anthony Davis, to know the Grizzlies need to come ready to play. “Eric Gordon looks like he’s back to the Eric Gordon everybody loves,” Joerger said. “He’s putting it on the floor and making 3′s. … They execute well. It’s going to be a tough night for us.”
- New Orleans coach Monty Williams has been pleased with the play of point guard Brian Roberts off the Pelican’s bench. Roberts came off the bench against the Suns and settled down a turnover-prone New Orleans offense. He also provided some scoring with a career-high 17 points with five assists and three steals. “Not only does he hit shots, but he gives us a head out there,” Williams said. “He knows our offense better than Jrue knows it right now. He kind of gives you some stability, especially on the second unit.
- The key for the Pelicans tonight will be keeping their big men out of foul trouble against the Grizzlies’ front line of Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph. That’s been a problem early on for New Orleans, who already is without forward Ryan Anderson (broken toe). “We’ve had to go to some different rotations and have guys who don’t normally play against starters, play against starters,” Williams said. “We’ve got to make sure we play aggressive, but we don’t want to pick up silly fouls.”
– By Marlon W. Morgan