Desmond Bane-Ja Morant-Grizzlies Lakers
Photo: Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports

Memphis Grizzlies have reached to 40 wins before the All-Star game after their 125-118 win over the Charlotte Hornets Saturday night. Memphis started the game firing in all-cylinders and held Charlotte to four points in the first half of the first quarter.

Grizzlies’ defensive effort in the first half was key for Taylor Jenkins and his team in huge road win. After the game, Memphis HC praised Ja Morant and Desmond Bane for their effort in the defensive end.

“Those guys are definitely improving. A lot of positives strides,” Jenkins said. “They provide a versatility for me every time we go to a scout. I got a lot of faith in both of them.”

Bane had a huge impact in both ends of the floor, while Morant held his own against a great guard duo like Terry Rozier and LaMelo Ball. After Memphis dropped a 35-point lead in the fourth quarter, Bane, Morant and Tuys Jones took over for the Grizzlies to hold on to the win.

”We are staying together and keeping our composure,” Bane said. ”We’ve been in a lot of close games this year and I feel like that is the difference between our team this year and last year. We have been able to win those close games down the stretch.”

The Hornets cut the lead to four points, but Memphis held its own. Tyus Jones hit a runner and Bane scored on a runout layup after Ball missed a 3-point attempt. Before that, Banes hit an important corner three, while Morant made a runner to allow the Grizzlies to remain atop.

Memphis was able to stop Charlotte in the first half, as the Hornets scored just 43 points on 27 percent shooting from the field. Ball shot 2-of-11 during that span, while Terry Rozier made four of his 11 shots.

The Grizzlies would like to keep their first half appearance and their reaction in the fourth quarter going forward. They will face New Orleans on Tuesday, before closing their impressive first part of the regular season against Blazers on Wednesday.