The Memphis Grizzlies (6-3) are coming off an afternoon game on Saturday against the Los Angeles Clippers in which they won 113-104 and snapped a two-game losing streak. Mike Conley led the Grizzlies in scoring with 22 while Marc Gasol added 22 points and 6 rebounds
The Los Angeles Lakers last played Friday night and beat the Brooklyn Nets 124-112. The Lakers (4-5) defeated the Nets Friday night behind 34 points from center Brook Lopez, while rookie Kyle Kuzma scored 21, Jordan Clarkson 19 and Brandon Ingram 18.
Three keys to the game
Lonzo Ball consistency – Lonzo Ball must play more consistent. The Lakers rookie from UCLA has played games where he has scored in double figures, handed out several assists and rebounded well, but he has also played poorly in other outings. Through nine games, Ball is averaging just 8.8 points, 6.7 assists and 6.6 rebounds. Those numbers are not bad for a rookie, but he is not considered just “any” rookie.
Conley nagging injuries – Conley is the driving force behind the Grizzlies on both ends of the court, but he has been nagged by an Achilles injury. He played well against the Clippers leading the Grizzlies in scoring. However, playing in back-to-back games with a sore Achilles could mean he will not be 100% for the game on Sunday evening against the Lakers.
Memphis’ sixth man – If Tyreke Evans continues to come off the bench and play the way he has been through six games, he could be in the running for the NBA Sixth Man Award. Evans has averaged over 19 points in his past six games and needs to continue scoring well for the Grizzlies.
Matchup to watch
Marc Gasol vs Brook Lopez – Gasol is still not playing 100% due to injuries, while Lopez is coming off a 34-point performance against his former team the Brooklyn Nets. Lopez will pull Gasol out from down low with his 3-point shooting abilities (six 3-pointers made versus Nets), which will open the inside for Ball to drive the lane. At the same time, Gasol will be a handful for Lopez on the offensive board.
Grizzlies projected starting lineup
PG – Mike Conley | SF – James Ennis III | SF – Dillion Brooks | PF – Brandon Wright, C – Marc Gasol
Lakers projected Starting Lineup
PG – Lonzo Ball, SG – Kantavious Caldwell-Pope, SF – Brandon Ingram, PF – Kyle Kuzma, C – Brook Lopez
Kuzma has started just one game for the Lakers this season, but in his last three games played he has scored 16, 22 and 21. He adder 13 rebounds on Friday against the Nets. In November, he is averaging 21.5 points and 8 rebounds. That makes him a good fantasy play here.
The Grizzlies will play back-to-back games having defeated the Clippers on Saturday afternoon. Veterans Gasol and Conley are nursing injuries, while the Lakers will be well rested after a 12-point win on Friday over the Nets and will have good value at home as underdogs.
The Lakers will take advantage of the injured Grizzlies and win 102-99.
FoxSports Southeast and FoxSports Prime Ticket are showing this game. Tip-off is at 9:30 pm ET.
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