Game: Golden State Warriors @ Memphis Grizzlies
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Odds: Warriors -2, Grizzlies +2
Golden State and Memphis met in last year’s Western Conference semifinals. The two teams were favored to compete for the conference title once again, but both have been fading as this season nears its end. The Warriors, currently fifth in the West, will take on the third-place Grizzlies tonight in Memphis.
The Warriors have lost seven straight road games, including four straight since Andrew Wiggins left the team for personal reasons. Wiggins has not been around since Feb. 14. There is no timetable for his return either, which is troublesome. Wiggins averages 17.1 points and 5.0 rebounds per game for Golden State.
The Warriors had hoped Stephen Curry’s return from an 11-game layoff due to a lower leg injury would put a stop to their struggles on the road. Curry, though, was unable to prevent losses to the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday and the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday despite scoring 27 and 40 points, respectively.
Golden State has exploited its home-court advantage to win the first two games of this regular season series. The Warriors Jordan Poole was ejected after two technical fouls in a 123-109 victory on Christmas Day, while Curry was booted from the game after hurling his mouthpiece into the stands late in a 122-120 victory a month later. The two teams meet for the final time this season on March 18 in Memphis.
Grizzlies star Ja Morant is now on a leave of absence due to a firearms incident that was made public when he posted online. Morant has missed two games and it was announced yesterday that he will miss four more. Morant will face no criminal charges for his actions.
Memphis has lost its last two games, which were both in Los Angeles. The Grizzlies fell to the Clippers on Sunday and to the Lakers on Tuesday. Morant has missed both games. It appears that his earliest possible return is set for March 17 against the San Antonio Spurs.
Tyus Jones has stepped into the starting lineup at point guard and played brilliantly, just as he did when Morant injured his knee and had to miss the final three games of the Grizzlies’ 4-2 playoff loss to Golden State the previous season. In the loss to the Clippers, Jones finished with 25 points, 12 assists, and five steals. In the loss to the Lakers, he scored 16 points.
In the postseason series against the Warriors last year, Jones had three starts. In Games 4 and 5, he scored 19 and 21 points, respectively, and in Game 6, when the Grizzlies were eliminated at Golden State, he scored seven points, grabbed nine rebounds, and dished out eight assists.
Golden State is 5-2 SU and ATS in its last seven games. The Warriors are 5-1 SU in their last six against the Grizzlies. As mentioned, the defending NBA champs have had their struggles on the road. They are 0-7 ATS in their last seven road games and the Warriors are just 3-7 ATS in their last ten games overall.
Join Oskeim Sports today and save 20% on your first purchase at the online store!