Ja Morant and the Memphis Grizzlies will look to build another win streak when they travel to Wisconsin for a shot at the reigning NBA champions. Will the Grizzlies add Milwaukee to their list of victims this season? Or will the Bucks deal Memphis its second loss in three games?
Catch this game live on Thursday, January 20, at 9 AM, Manila time
Away: Memphis Grizzlies (31-15/14-6 on the road)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Ja Morant
- SG: Desmond Bane
- SF: Ziaire Williams
- PF: Jaren Jackson Jr.
- C: Steven Adams
The Grizzlies cooled down a bit during a 112-85 home loss to the Dallas Mavericks last Saturday which halted Memphis’ incredible 11-game unbeaten streak. But they’re back in the business of winning shortly after that. Ja Morant and Desmond Bane scored 25 points apiece to lead the Grizzlies to a 119-106 home win over the Chicago Bulls Tuesday — a perfect way to send the team off to a four-game road trip that begins Thursday in Milwaukee. The Grizzlies have won their last two visits to Fiserv Forum. The lastest was in April 2020 when Memphis scored a 128-115 victory at Milwaukee’s home.
Moreover, Memphis is 3-2 and 5-5 against the spread in its last five and 10 games in Milwaukee, respectively. Containing Morant has been a problem all teams not named Memphis share. He is averaging 24.4 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 6.7 assists this season., and could carve up Milwaukee’s defense that had just been torched for 30 points by Trae Young. With Milwaukee likely to miss the presence of Jrue Holiday this Thursday, the Bucks will be down a huge defensive weapon that could help slow down Morant. Then again, Memphis isn’t just all about Morant. The Grizzlies, who are 9-1 ATS in their last 10 games, have eight players averaging at least eight points per contest.
Home: Milwaukee Bucks (27-19/14-8 at home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: George Hill
- SG: Grayson Allen
- SF: Khris Middleton
- PF: Giannis Antetokounmpo
- C: Bobby Portis
The Bucks continue to take a beating this year. They are now just 3-6 straight up in nine games since the start of 2022. The last time they were on the floor, they got ran off the court by the Atlanta Hawks in a 121-114 road loss last Tuesday. Prior to that, Milwaukee got whipped by the Toronto Raptors at home on Sunday, 103-96. Giannis Antetokounmpo and Khris Middleton came up huge for the Bucks against Atlanta, scoring 27 and 34 points, respectively, but Milwaukee just couldn’t stop Young and the Hawks with some good, honest defense. Atlanta went 30/32 from the foul line.
Maybe the Bucks will be luckier Thursday, with Memphis averaging just 21.5 free-throw attempts per contest. Milwaukee also presents a tough challenge for the Grizzlies’ rebounding. The Grizzlies are the best-rebounding team in the league, but the Bucks aren’t too shabby either, as Milwaukee is tops overall in defensive rebounds per game and third in total rebounds per outing. Milwaukee is 6-4 straight up in its last 10 games against the Grizzlies, dating back to 2016.
Spread: It’s hard to trust the Bucks in this one. They are way, way below .500 (8-14 ATS) in terms of covering at home this season, while the Grizzlies are a strong 15-5 ATS on the road. Ride the Grizzlies bandwagon for a cover (+6).
Over/Under: This is an intriguing battle between two great-rebounding teams. The pace could be slower than usual in this game for both teams. Taking the Under (225.5) for this one.