OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Zach Randolph leaped to make a block from behind on Brandon Rush and instead hit him in the head, throwing the Golden State Warriors forward off balance and sending him crashing to the court in a scary fall.
Down came the home team's coronation.
Down came any celebration for the Memphis Grizzlies' first victory, too.
Randolph finished with 15 points and 14 rebounds as the Grizzlies spoiled Golden State's home opener with a 104-94 victory over the Warriors on Friday night after Rush injured his left knee. Randolph ran to the Warriors locker room later to offer his remorse and any help for the unintended injury.
"Man, that really threw me off," Randolph said. "I had shook it off in the second half but that really kind of bothered me the first half. It really bothered me."
Same for Golden State.
Marc Gasol and Mike Conley both scored 21 points, and Rudy Gay added 18 points and eight rebounds to help Memphis build a 14-point lead following the fall. The Grizzlies rebounded from a loss at the Los Angeles Clippers two nights earlier, but could hardly smile in the locker room afterward.
Randolph's foul on Rush in the first quarter put a damper for all involved in Golden State's first game at Oracle Arena this season. Rush, who tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee in 2007 while at Kansas, held back tears and had to be helped off the court. He was scheduled to have an MRI on Saturday.
"I think that took a little bit out of us," Warriors coach Mark Jackson said.
After looking rattled for several minutes and facing a large deficit, Golden State scored 15 straight points to take a 39-38 lead before the Grizzlies ran away with the victory in the second half.
Stephen Curry scored 26 points and had seven assists and reserve Carl Landry added 20 points for Golden State on a night all the good vibes from Wednesday's win at Phoenix came crashing down. New center Andrew Bogut, easing back into game shape after left ankle surgery, had 4 points and three rebounds in 18 minutes.
"When you see one of your brothers go down like that, emotionally, it was pretty tough," Curry said.
Not exactly the way the Warriors wanted opening night at Oracle to end.
A pregame video montage showed highlights from last season and mixed in shots of San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland. Players walked through a mock Bay Bridge complete with lights and fireballs popped after each name was called.
Owner Joe Lacob sat courtside cheering in one of the blue T-shirts every fan received. The Warriors also wore their blue road jerseys to support the theme.
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