Who: Memphis Grizzlies vs Charlotte Bobcats
What: NBA Basketball – Grizzlies Home Game
When: 8:00 PM ET
Where: Live at FedEx Forum, Memphis, TN
|Memphis||35-26||102.7 (19)||102.4 (11)||92.2 (30)|
|Charlotte||29-33||99.8 (24)||101.4 (7)||95.2 (21)|
Memphis: Mike Miller (DTD)
Charlotte: Gerald Henderson (OUT), Brendan Haywood (OUT), Jeffery Taylor (OUT)
|PG||Mike Conley Jr.||Kemba Walker|
|SG||Courtney Lee||Chris Douglas-Roberts|
|SF||Tayshaun Prince||Michael Kidd-Gilchrist|
|PF||Zach Randolph||Josh McRoberts|
|C||Marc Gasol||Al Jefferson|
|6th Man||Tony Allen||Gary Neal|
- Charlotte is in the ‘Grindhouse’ tonight – what a great nickname for an arena. So fitting for the style that Memphis loves to play. The Grizzlies use less possessions of any team in the NBA. This group wants to muddy the water, play as physical as possible, and yep, grind it out for W’s. Oh, and they’re really good at it.
- The Grizzlies will play a ton of high-low with Gasol and Randolph. Really, they’re going to force the ball to the rim in pretty much anyway they can. Only 15.9% of Memphis’ total points are accounted for from long range (three-pointers) – that’s easily the lowest percentage in the league. For example, the Bobcats are bottom-5 in this category, but 18.7% of their total points come from the bonusphere. Clifford: ‘Pack it in tonight boys.’
- Charlotte and Memphis are both stingy on allowing their opponents to grab offensive rebounds – the Bobcats are 2nd in the league in defensive rebounding rate (77.1) and the Grizzlies are 5th (75.8). On the same token, Charlotte will concede offensive rebounding to get back on defense. With Gasol and Randolph, the Grizzlies will not – Memphis boards 27.8% (6th) of their offensive rebound opportunities. Something has to give here, and how effectively the Bobcats are able to limit the Grizz second chance opportunities tonight will carry serious weight on the result.
- Al Jefferson: past 5 games — 29.0 PPG, 9.6 RPG, 63.5 FG%. How will Memphis choose to handle him? My guess is that Gasol will garner the assignment on his own until it doesn’t work – there’s a good chance that could be the case. Look, Gasol is a solid post-defender, but there’s simply been no one that can stop Jefferson recently. Nobody.
- Charlotte needs to look to push the pace as much as possible tonight. Simply put, it’s just not a great idea to allow the Grizzlies defense to get set. CDR, I believe, can help this idea – he’s eager to get on the glass (9 REB last night) and can bring it up immediately.
- I do believe the Bobcats can win this game tonight, but they’re going to have to help Jefferson out and knock down some outside shots. Gary Neal and Anthony Tolliver need to be big off the bench tonight and the second unit, in general, needs to give more support than they have recently. Time for Luke Ridnour to wake up – I understand very clearly that he’s not going to be able to get where he wants on the floor with the dribble at this point in his career, but the turnovers have to stop – just clear the ball, get the team into their sets, and, for goodness sakes, makes a hand-to-hand pass please. Okay, sorry, I had to get that rant out.
- With a win tonight, the Bobcats would draw even with Brooklyn in the win column and 1 1/2 game back of the #6 spot in the east.
- Prediction: 90-87 Grizzlies.