Grizzlies rookies lead late rally over Bucks in preseason opener
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Rookie David Roddy scored 18 points, two-way signee Kenny Lofton Jr. added 17 and the Memphis Grizzlies used a late run to beat the Milwaukee Bucks 107-102 on Saturday night in the opening preseason game for both teams.
Many of the star players for both teams didn’t play. Milwaukee All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo, forward Khris Middleton and guard Joe Ingles, who came over from Utah in a late-season trade after he was injured, were among those not dressing. Even Milwaukee coach Mike Budenholzer was out, still recovering from offseason ankle surgery.
Leading scorer Ja Morant, backup Tyus Jones, center Steven Adams and starting guard Desmond Bane were among the Grizzlies who sat.
Jake LaRavia, another Memphis rookie, scored 15 points, while Santi Aldama scored 13. Ziaire Williams and rookie point guard Kennedy Chandler added 11 points each, Chandler handing out eight assists.
Jordan Nwora scored 21 points, while Grayson Allen and Sandro Mamukelashvili, under a two-way contract with Milwaukee, each finished with 15.
It was the first appearance for both teams after successful 2021-22 campaigns. The Bucks finished 51-31, good for third in the Eastern Conference, while Memphis had the second-best record in the NBA at 56-26.
Both teams were eliminated in the second round of the playoffs by the eventual conference champions – Golden State in the West and Boston in the East.
Earlier Saturday, the Grizzlies announced they have signed center Steven Adams to a multi-year extension. Adams, who joined the Grizzlies before last season in a trade from New Orleans, averaged 6.9 points, 10.0 rebounds and 3.4 assists for Memphis.