Grizzlies vs. Raptors Odds & Pick (Sunday, August 9): Bet on Clippers Bounceback
Photo credit: Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Pascal Siakam
- Bryan Mears breaks down betting odds and offers his predictions and picks for Sunday's NBA matchup between the Grizzlies and Raptors.
- Despite Toronto's recent 22-point loss to Boston, and concerns about the team's motivation against Memphis, Bryan is still throwing his support behind the Raptors.
- Check out his full matchup analysis below, including a value pick on the Grizzlies team total.
Grizzlies vs. Raptors Odds, Picks
|Grizzlies odds||+7 [BET NOW]|
|Raptors odds||-7 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||+230/-291 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||222 [BET NOW]|
|Time||2 p.m. ET|
The Raptors and Grizzlies both have some things to play for entering Sunday’s showdown.
Of course, the Grizzlies’ situation is a little more urgent, as they’re fighting to keep the 8-seed amidst a torrid Blazers run in the bubble. But the Raps aren’t technically locked into the 2-seed yet. If they lose out and the Celtics win out, they’d actually move to the third spot as Boston owns the tiebreaker.
What does that all mean for Sunday’s matchup? Let’s break it down.
The Grizz could really use this one. Their lead for the 8-seed is down to just 1.5 games over the Blazers, and both teams have three games remaining. But just a half game back of Portland are the Suns and Spurs. Things are tightening up.
Memphis was dealt a pretty huge blow last week, losing young stud Jaren Jackson Jr. for the season with a torn meniscus. The Grizz aren’t exactly loaded with other top-end talent, so long-term they’ll likely miss Jackson Jr. quite a bit.
They lost their first game without him to the Utah Jazz last Wednesday, 124-115. But then again without him Friday, they blew out a good Thunder squad by 29 points, not only covering the 3-point spread but easily winning outright.
The problem, though: The Thunder were missing Steven Adams, and it really showed. The Grizzlies went 20-of-22 at the rim; that’s freaking over 90%. And they didn’t even really do the damage in transition; in fact, they didn’t really run that much at all. That was mostly in the halfcourt, which is just an incredible feat against any team, especially a playoff one.
Things will be much tougher against the Raptors, who have posted the third-best rim defense in the league this season. And if they can’t dominate at the rim — and they aren’t going to push the pace with Ja Morant — I don’t trust their shooting to keep up with Toronto.
Speaking of Toronto, the Raps are coming off their first loss of the bubble, a 22-point drubbing by the Celtics. The starters really got run off the court: Pascal Siakam, for example, was a -26 in that game.
The Celtics were able to really dominate in transition, which led to Boston shooting 81.2% at the rim. As mentioned above, the Grizz will try to relentlessly attack them there Sunday; will they get back into a good defensive groove?
The Celtics are actually a fairly tough matchup for the Raptors, who notably allow the most 3-pointers (and most from the corners) in the league. With a roster stacked full of good shooters, that’s a problem.
Against the Grizzlies, though, who shoot 3s at a bottom-five rate and hit them about as poorly, that weakness may not be exploited. And perhaps that’s especially true without Jackson Jr., who led Memphis this year in 3-pointers made per game as a big man.
Really, though, handicapping the Raps comes down to motivation. I wouldn’t play with fire: Their remaining three games after this one are against the Bucks, Sixers and Nuggets. They should win this one and go ahead and lock up the 2-seed and an amazingly easy matchup against either the Nets or Magic.
Betting Analysis & Pick
Honestly, this game feels about right to me. It may seem like seven points is too much given the uncertainty with how Toronto will play this, but I think that’s being factored in. If the Raps wanted to win this game, I’d find value on their end actually.
Instead I’ll look to the total. The Raps have done a great job outside of that Boston game limiting easy shots in the paint. Where they could be exploited is spacing out the floor, which the Grizzlies just aren’t equipped to do.
The Grizzlies have also played a little slower with Jackson Jr. off the court this year, and that could continue given their personnel. Do they try to work it into Jonas Valanciunas on the block a little more?
Given that Memphis’ strengths just really conflict with Toronto’s, I like the under, although a hot Raps offensive performance could ruin that. If you trust Toronto to play this straight up, perhaps the better play is under on the Grizzlies’ team total.
Betting lean: Under 107.5 Grizzlies team total