MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Four days off allowed the Philadelphia 76ers to get back to the basics.
And get back in the win column.
The Sixers had dropped six of eight since the All-Star break, including a 98-91 loss to the New Orleans Hornets on Monday night. They had several days of practice to prepare for the Grizzlies.
"It made a huge difference for us," said Louis Williams, who added with 18 points off the Sixers' bench. "Not so much to get our legs back, but for us to get back to the drawing board and get some things corrected and get some things understood."
"That is the best I've seen [Conley] play, and it wasn't just because he was making shots," Memphis coach Lionel Hollins said. "He was pushing the ball and attacking the basket. He was kicking the ball ahead. He was doing all the things that we talked about and worked on in practice."
Memphis played the second half without Rudy Gay, who was poked in the right eye in the first half. That, along with an ankle injury to reserve point guard Marko Jaric, left the Grizzlies short-handed after halftime.
"We ran out of bodies," Hollins said. "We didn't have enough guys that could play ... so we played with what we had. I'm proud of the way the guys battled."
Both teams shot well overall, with Memphis connecting on 56 percent, while the Sixers converted 50 percent of their shots. The game was close throughout with 19 ties and 15 lead changes, and neither team held a double-digit lead. In the end, the Sixers made plays down the stretch.
Memphis led 95-94 when Conley scored on a reverse layup with 3:24 left. But the Sixers answered with 12-4 run, capped by Iguodala's 3-pointer for a 106-99 lead, and Philadelphia never trailed again.
"We came up with some big plays down the stretch," Philadelphia coach Tony DiLeo said. "We hit some big 3-pointers, and our defense was pretty good. We are happy with the win."
Both teams hurt themselves with poor free-throw shooting as Memphis was 14-for-21 and Philadelphia was 19-for-30.
Conley hit his first four shots as the Grizzlies opened at 69 percent shooting, but that wasn't enough to overcome a porous defensive effort. The Sixers repeatedly got to the rim for easy baskets, and the Grizzlies were sloppy on offense.
Representative of the poor execution, Jaric was calling a play out front, and Williams stole the ball cleanly from him and ran the floor for a fastbreak basket. On Philadelphia's next possession, Ratliff scored from 7 feet out as Darko Milicic's defense amounted to standing with his back to Ratliff and his arms extended in the air.
Memphis already had 10 turnovers before the midway point of the second period, helping Philadelphia to a nine-point lead. Memphis would have a dozen miscues before intermission, and end the night with 18 -- compared to nine for the Sixers.
"We got a lot of fastbreak points, which is in our favor," Iguodala said of the Sixers' 30-14 advantage on the break. "We scored over 100, which is always a plus for us, plus making them commit turnovers."
Conley was able to keep Memphis in the game as he had already matched his season high with 18 points in the first half, hitting eight of his 10 shots, carrying Memphis to a 55-51 halftime lead.
"Tonight wasn't an easy win," said Iguodala, who had 12 points in the fourth. "We didn't play our best, but we got a win against a team who was fighting."
Young played for Mitchell High in Memphis before attending Georgia Tech. ... Conley was back in the lineup after breaking a front tooth when he caught an elbow from Baron Davis in Wednesday's win over the Clippers. Conley said before the game that he will wear a mouthpiece. ... Memphis coach Lionel Hollins played two-plus seasons for the Sixers from 1979-1982. ... Officials reviewed a basket by Conley in the third quarter and the shot, originally ruled a 2, was changed to a 3-pointer. ... The Grizzlies loss, coupled with the Dallas Mavericks' 119-103 victory over the Washington Wizards on Saturday night, eliminated Memphis from the playoffs.
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