Grizzlies lose big on Opening Night in Indianapolis
INDIANAPOLIS — Bojan Bogdanovic scored 19 points and Victor Oladipo added 16 to help the Indiana Pacers rout the Memphis Grizzlies 111-83 on Wednesday night.
It was the largest-opening night victory margin in the franchise’s NBA era, breaking the mark of 27 set against the then New Jersey Nets in 1985.
Domantas Sabonis finished with 14 points and 15 rebounds as Indiana earned its seventh opening-night win eight years. The Pacers also have won eight of their last nine home openers.
Marc Gasol scored 13 points and Garrett Temple had 12 _ all on 3-pointers _ for the Grizzlies. It was Memphis’ first season-opening loss in three years _ and this one was never really close.
Indiana took a 26-16 lead after one quarter, then used a 14-2 second-quarter run to make it 41-17.
Memphis closed to 56-39 at the half and cut the deficit to 14 twice in the third quarter, but the Pacers fended off the finally charge with 9-3 run to rebuild a 73-53 lead.
The Grizzlies never got closer than 18 the rest of the game on a night Indiana was 10 of 25 on 3s and had 20 turnovers.
Grizzlies: Mike Conley returned to his hometown and scored 11 points in his first regular-season appearance since mid-November. He missed 70 games last season with an injured left heel. … Rookie Jaren Jackson Jr., who grew up in nearby Carmel, scored 10 points in his NBA debut. … The game was J.B. Bickerstaff’s first as a full-time head coach. He previously served as an interim coach with Houston in 2015-16 and last season with Memphis. … Gasol appeared to hurt his right leg during the second quarter but returned before halftime and played throughout the second half.
Pacers: Indiana has won three straight over the Grizzlies. … Tyreke Evans had 14 points and six assists against his former team. Evans played last season in Memphis. … The Pacers finished with a 57-28 rebounding advantage _ recording their highest single-game total since 2003. … Doug McDermott had 12 points, Cory Joseph finished with 11 and Thaddeus Young wound up with 10 points and eight rebounds. … TJ Leaf, Indiana’s first-round draft pick in 2017, left late in the first quarter with a sprained left ankle and did not return.
Grizzlies: Will try to rebound in their home opener against Atlanta on Friday night.
Pacers: Make their first road trip of the season at Milwaukee on Friday night.