Grizzlies vs. Warriors Odds
|Time||10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
The Memphis Grizzlies put an absolute beatdown on the Golden State Warriors in Game 5 to force a Game 6.
The Grizzlies will once again be without Ja Morant, but can they continue to stave off elimination and force a win-or-go-home Game 7?
Let’s break down this pivotal matchup.
Can the Grizzlies Continue Success Without Ja Morant?
The Grizzlies have found tremendous success without Morant this season, and they will once again need to tap into this.
One thing that’s notable about Morant’s absence from the lineup is the Grizzlies’ defense improves dramatically. On the season, when Morant is off the floor, the Grizzlies’ defense allows 5.4 fewer points per 100 possessions, per Cleaning the Glass.
Obviously, the Grizzlies take a significant hit on the offensive end without Morant, but with Desmond Bane’s emergence, it has not been as stark of a drop-off as last season.
If the Grizzlies want to win, they need their defense to keep it close and grind out the offense.
One player that we faded to much success last series was Steven Adams. However, he’s very playable in this series, and he’s been an absolute monster on the glass for the Grizzlies. Adams creates a size advantage and exploits one of the few weaknesses the Warriors have: they are generally undersized.
Because the Warriors generally play Draymond Green at the 5, Adams is not a liability defensively. He can anchor himself to the interior, considering Green is not much of a threat to score from the perimeter.
In Games 4 and 5, Adams played 27.2 and 21.8 minutes. He posted lines of 10/15/3 and 7/13/3, respectively. He’s an excellent passing big, and he can help the Grizzlies clean up their misses and create second-chance opportunities.
His Points Rebounds and Assists line is currently 20.5, and that’s absolutely a play in this game.
Warriors’ Goal Should Be Limiting Turnovers
The Warriors put up an absolutely embarrassing performance in Game 5, but now they get the chance to close out the series at home in Game 6.
The frustrating thing for Golden State in this series is it’s shooting much better than Memphis. In the series, the Warriors have an eFG% of 54.3% compared to the Grizzlies’ 50.8%.
For perspective, if these numbers happened during the regular season, the Warriors would be ranked 11th in the league while the Grizzlies would be 28th.
The Warriors are taking and making higher-quality shots.
The Warriors need to give up fewer turnovers because those giveaways end up as fast-breaks, which is where the Grizzlies thrive on offense. When the Warriors force the Grizzlies to operate in the half-court, the offense can stall.
When Morant has been off the floor in the postseason, the Grizzlies are scoring just 90.7 points per 100 half-court plays. This is where the Warriors need to force the Grizzlies to live.
The Warriors should absolutely win Game 6 and advance to the Western Conference Finals, but what should happen is not necessarily what will happen.
One thing that does seem inevitable is the Warriors will dominate once again at home in the third quarter
The Warriors are 6-2 straight up in the third quarter with a +14.7 Net Rating, which is bolstered by an impressive 128.6 Offensive Rating in the Playoffs, per NBA Advanced Stats.
This is a spot where they may throw defense aside, with the idea that they can outscore their opponents with their death lineup of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Jordan Poole, Andrew Wiggins and Green.
Rather than lay the 2.5 points — which is acceptable — I’ll back the Warriors to score 30+ points in the quarter, something they’ve done in three of their five home playoff games this season with an average of 31.8 points scored.
Picks: Warriors 3Q Team Total o29.5 points (+100 FanDuel) | Steven Adams over 20.5 Points Rebounds and Assists