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Portland Trail Blazers vs. Memphis Grizzlies Game Preview - Grizzly Bear Blues

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PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS VS. MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES GAME PREVIEW

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7 comments


The Grizzlies look to go into the break with a big win over the Trail
Blazers

By bcabraham @bcabraham
Feb 12, 2020, 7:00am CST

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Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via
Getty Images

WHO: PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS
(25-30,
10-19 AWAY) VS. MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES
(27-26, 15-13
HOME)

WHEN: 7:00 PM CT

WHERE: FEDEXFORUM IN MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE

HOW TO WATCH/LISTEN: FOX SPORTS SOUTHEAST/92.9 FM ESPN MEMPHIS

_INJURY REPORT:_

_PORTLAND- __Mario Hezonja_
_
(Questionable, ankle), __Nassir Little_
_
(Questionable, ankle), __Rodney Hood_
_ (Out,
achilles), __Zach Collins_
_ (Out,
shoulder), __Jusuf Nurkic_
_ (Out,
leg)_

_MEMPHIS- __Grayson Allen_
_ (Out,
hip), __Justise Winslow_
_ (Out,
back)_

_PROJECTED STARTING LINEUPS:_

_PORTLAND- __DAMIAN LILLARD_
_, __CJ
MCCOLLUM_ _,
__TREVOR ARIZA_
_, __CARMELO
ANTHONY_
_,
__HASSAN WHITESIDE_


_MEMPHIS- __JA MORANT_
_, __DILLON
BROOKS_ _,
__KYLE ANDERSON_
_, __JAREN
JACKSON JR._
_,
__JONAS VALANCIUNAS_
_ _

TRAIL BLAZERS VS. GRIZZLIES: A VERY IMPORTANT GAME


-------------------------

The Grizzlies are set to host the red hot Portland Trail Blazers in
their final game before the All-Star Break this upcoming weekend. The
Grizzlies hold a slim 3 game lead over the Trail Blazers for the 8th
seed in the Western Conference standings. With tonight's game being
the first in the season series, the winner will take a big step
towards clinching a potential tie-breaker assuming both these teams
are still fighting for the playoffs in a couple of months.

After disappointing for most of the season, the Trail Blazers have
made a run for the playoffs thanks in large part to Damian Lillard
’s MVP
type performance over the past few weeks. Even after the trade
deadline, the Grizzlies are still good enough to hold off the Blazers
and make a surprise appearance in the postseason but it won’t come
easy.

What will it take for the Grizzlies to come away with a big time win
heading into All-Star Weekend? Let’s take a look.

CONTAIN THE “OTHER” GUYS

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY
Sports
Damian Lillard
is going
to put up monster numbers tonight. Nobody has been able to slow him
down over the last few weeks. Going into last nights matchup against
the New Orleans Pelicans
, Lillard
averaged
41.5 points, 9.4 assists and 5.7 rebounds over the last 10 games.
He’s been on another level. The key for the Grizzlies is to not
allow the other Blazers to beat you. Known Grizzly killer CJ McCollum
is always a
threat to go off, so the Grizzlies will need to be sure to lock him
up. Carmelo Anthony
has
revived his career in Portland. Melo, along with McCollum
, Ariza
, Whiteside
and Gary Trent Jr.
form a
nice supporting cast alongside Lillard
. If the
Grizzlies can slow those guys down, they should be able to overcome
what will presumably be another great performance from Lillard.

ATTACK THE PAINT

Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY
Sports
With Lillard likely to go supernova, the Grizzlies will need to be
sure to attack the paint and get easy baskets. With the Grizzlies
shooting just 23.8% from beyond the arc over their past 5 games, a
3-point shootout with the Trail Blazers would likely end horribly.
Luckily for the Grizzlies, the Trail Blazers lack depth down low with
both Hassan Whiteside and Caleb Swanigan
being the
lone true “big men” for the Blazers. Neither of them are known for
their defensive prowess so the Grizzlies should be able to take full
advantage. Jonas Valanciunas
and
Jaren Jackson Jr.
should
be able to bully Portland on the block. Ja Morant and Dillon Brooks
should
also be able to get some easy mid-range shots attacking the Portland
big men in the pick and roll. Attacking the paint will put the
Portland defense on skates and should give them some easy looks at the
basket which will help offset Lillard’s production.

THE PREDICTION

Nelson
Chenault-USA TODAY Sports
Tonight’s matchup is big for both the Grizzlies and Trail Blazers.
It could have major implications on the playoff race, and will also
allow one team to go into the All-Star break feeling pretty good about
themselves. The Trail Blazers have been hot as of late thanks to
Lillard but the Grizzlies are still pretty darn good themselves.
Lillard is going to get his points, but I think the Grizzlies bench is
deep enough to help carry the Grizzlies to victory. The Grizzlies
bench is one of the top 10 scoring benches in the league while the
Trail Blazers bench just has Gary Trent Jr.
to worry
about, barring a surprise performance by an end of bench guy.

It will be close, but the home court (the only time against Portland
this season Memphis will be at home) and bench advantage should be
enough to push the Grizzlies to victory, especially with Portland on
the second night of a back-to-back.

GRIZZLIES 125, TRAIL BLAZERS 120

Follow @sbnGrizzlies

AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top
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2020 draft

MORE FROM GRIZZLY BEAR BLUES

* Memphis takes care of Portland 111-104


* What should the Grizzlies do with their open roster spot?


* A moment in time with the Memphis Grizzlies


* What Justise Winslow means to Memphis


* Utilizing Jordan Bell


* Portland Trail Blazers vs. Memphis Grizzlies: A Very Important
Game



MOST READ

*
Memphis takes care of Portland 111-104 Drip N Slime holds off the
Trail Blazers in an important game in the race for the playoffs
*
What should the Grizzlies do with their open roster spot? It’s
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*
What Justise Winslow means to Memphis Justise Winslow is now a member
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he bring to Memphis when he’s back healthy 100%.
*
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be an impact player for the Grizzlies if utilized correctly.
*
A moment in time with the Memphis Grizzlies Making memories, come
what may

FIND TICKETS

*

FRI Feb 28
Sacramento Kings @ Memphis Grizzlies
7:00 PM - FedExForum - Memphis, TN 1,582 tickets available


*

SAT Feb 29
Los Angeles Lakers @ Memphis Grizzlies
7:00 PM - FedExForum - Memphis, TN 1,251 tickets available



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