He had landed in Memphis the day before. He had tried to learn a handful of plays during walk-through. Now Tayshaun Prince was sprinting down the court with Mike Conley to his right, a couple of Washington Wizards back. Conley slipped him the ball. Prince rose up and released that familiar left-handed shot.

It dropped.

The crowd went nuts.

With 1:11 left, the new-look Memphis Grizzlies could finally exhale.

"We got the 'W,' " said Prince. "That's the main thing."

He sounds like a Memphis Grizzly already, doesn't he?

And plays like one, too. Which came in mighty handy Friday night, when the Grizzlies averted disaster — or at the very least, ignominy — by defeating the Washington Wizards, 85-76.

"This was huge for us," said Conley. "We needed to get a win after everything that went on this week."

The everything, you know about. Unless you've been living under a rock. Rudy Gay was traded to Toronto as part of a deal that was either 1) the most brilliant trade ever, or 2) the stupidest trade in world history.