Clippers vs. Grizzlies NBA Odds & Picks: Back Kawhi Leonard and Co. to Bounce Back Friday
Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Kawhi Leonard #2 of the LA Clippers.
- The Clippers had to Memphis to take on the Grizzlies on Friday night.
- It's the second consecutive matchup between the teams, and the Grizzlies pulled the upset on Thursday.
- Roberto Arguello explains below why he expects the Clippers to bounce back as favorites.
Clippers vs. Grizzlies Odds
|Moneyline||-250 / +205|
|Time||8 p.m. ET|
|TV||NBA League Pass|
The Grizzlies will host the Clippers for the second consecutive game on Friday night. While the Clippers were favored by eight on Thursday, the Grizzlies upset them in a 122-94 blowout.
The Grizzlies shot 54% from the floor and outscored the Clippers 17-1 in points off turnovers. The Grizzlies lead the league in points in the paint, and they finished the game with 72 paint points. The Clippers will look to bounce back as six-point favorites.
Los Angeles Clippers
If the Clippers win and cover in the rematch, they need Kawhi Leonard and Paul George to score efficiently. Expect the Clippers to play with a greater sense of urgency defensively after this embarrassing blowout loss.
The Clippers lead the NBA in 3-point accuracy as they have made 42% of their trees this season. Grizzlies coach Taylor Jenkins told the media that his team was determined to limit catch-and-shoot 3s to force the Clippers into tougher shots, and the Clippers made just 35% (12-of-34) of their 3s on Thursday.
Leonard and George are the Clippers’ best shot creators, and they will need to do a better job of creating for themselves with the Grizzlies limiting quality looks on the perimeter. Leonard and George combined to shoot 9-of-26 from the field and score 30 total points.
Per Cleaning The Glass, both of the Clippers’ All-Stars rank in the 85th percentile or higher in points per 100 shot attempts among forwards (123 for Leonard and 133 for George).
Leonard and George are each averaging over 24 points per game while shooting at least 51/39/87 on field goals, 3s, and free throws. With Patrick Beverley likely resting in the second game of the back-to-back, they will play a larger role running the offense as they look to rebound from uncharacteristically poor performances.
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If the Grizzlies cover or pull the upset, they need to continue defending at a high level while getting efficient scoring from Dillon Brooks and Kyle Anderson.
The Grizzlies did an excellent job of defending the 3-point line in the first meeting, but they also stymied the Clippers’ All-Stars with tremendous individual defense. Justice Winslow gave Grizzlies fans a glimpse of the player they had hoped for when they traded for him last year.
Winslow made his Grizzlies debut just three games ago after dealing with a lingering hip injury, but he impressed with his suffocating defense on Leonard.
The Grizzlies benefitted from good looks in transition against the Clippers as they scored 72 paint points, but they will likely need their tough-shot makers to have another efficient night to cover or upset the Clippers again.
Brooks and Anderson have consistently played a large role in the Grizzlies offense as wings/forwards who have good size and can create their own shots. Ja Morant is an incredible young player, but until he consistently starts making 3s and longer jump shots, the Grizzlies will need Brooks and Anderson to score efficiently to be at their best.
Per Cleaning The Glass, Anderson has a slightly above-average effective field goal percentage this season of 55.5%, but Brooks ranks in just the ninth percentile at 45.6% due to his oftentimes questionable shot selection of difficult shots. They combined for 32 points on 21 shots in Thursday’s win, and if they can combine to score more points than shot attempts again, the Grizzlies will have a great shot at covering.
Last Wednesday the Clippers were blown out by the Jazz 114-96, but the Clippers bounced back when they beat the Jazz in the second game of their mini-series 116-112 on Friday.
Expect the Clippers to bounce back from another humbling loss by beating the Grizzlies by at least six after making adjustments and playing with more urgency defensively. George and Leonard haven’t had many individually inefficient games this season, and they should lead the Clippers on Friday following the rare down game for both on Thursday.
While I lean toward the Clippers at -6 (don’t bet them any lower than -6.5), I believe there will be better value on opportunities to live bet the Clippers at -4 (or better) as the Grizzlies should keep this competitive thanks to coach Jenkins’s defensive scheme and the individual defense of Winslow.
Pick: Live bet Clippers -4 or better