The Pacers and Grizzlies wrap up their season series on Thursday, with both teams playing on a back-to-back after putting for plenty of effort in their respective first games.
The Pacers lost to the Kings on a tip in with 0.2 seconds remaining which suddenly flipped a W to an L and in turn improved the Pacers current draft status. So with the larger picture in mind, not all was lost.
The Grizzlies, still playing without star Ja Morant, absorbed 43 points by Kyrie Irving and another 35 points from Kevin Durant while rallying in the fourth quarter to beat the Nets in impressive fashion. Local legend Desmond Bane made six of the Grizz’s 19 three-pointers to help lead the way. Seems safe to say that the Grizz are having more fun than the Pacers this year, as illustrated by the post-game interview.
After expending all of that energy and emotion, you would think the Pacers could sneak into town and catch Memphis looking past the Blue and Gold. However, the Grizz simply ran past the Pacers, 135-102 last week in Indy so they will be quite familiar with the task at hand against the patchwork Pacers.
The Pacers will be without Malcolm Brogdon, Chris Duarte and Isaiah Jackson with Goga Bitadze and Tyrese Haliburton listed as questionable. Also, Rick Carlisle is tending to a personal matter and did not make the trip with the team which will put Lloyd Pierce in charge for the next two games.
Memphis will be down key players in Morant and Dillon Brooks, but still have plenty of firepower to throw at the Pacers. In fact, Memphis is 17-2 in games without Ja Morant this year which is why Draft Kings has the Grizzlies as 11.5-point favorites.
DraftKings Odds: Grizzlies -11.5, O/U 235 (latest DraftKings odds here)
When: 8:00 PM EST
Where: FedEx Forum, Memphis, TN
TV: Bally Sports Indiana
Radio: 93.5 FM/107.5 FM
Projected Starting Lineups:
Pacers: Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield, Justin Anderson, Oshae Brissett, Goga Bitadze
Grizzlies: Tyus Jones, Desmond Bane, Kyle Anderson, Jaren Jackson Jr., Steven Adams
IND: Goga Bitadze - questionable (sore right foot), Tyrese Haliburton - questionable (sore lower back), Malcolm Brogdon - out (rest), Chris Duarte - out (sore left toe), Isaiah Jackson - out (headache), T.J. McConnell - out (right wrist ligament surgery), Ricky Rubio - out (torn left ACL), Myles Turner - out (left foot stress reaction), T.J. Warren – out (left navicular fracture)
MEM: Dillon Brooks - out (left ankle return from injury management), Brandon Clarke - out (sore left hip), Ja Morant - out (sore right knee), Killian Tillie - out (sore left knee)
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