Memphis Grizzlies vs. Boston Celtics 12/29/18: Starting Lineups, Matchup Breakdown, Odds, Daily Fantasy, Betting
Memphis Grizzlies vs. Boston Celtics Preview
The Eastern Conference’s fifth-place team, the Boston Celtics (20-14) will hit the road for a matchup against the Memphis Grizzlies (18-16) tonight, who are currently hanging onto ninth place in the West.
While Memphis has only won three of their last 10, they are coming into tonight’s game on a two-game winning streak, with victories against the Los Angeles Lakers and Cleveland Cavaliers. Boston was on a two-game streak, including an impressive 121-114 overtime win against Philadelphia.
This will be the first matchup in the season series between Memphis and Boston. The Celtics won the last game last season 109-98 with Kyrie Irving finishing with 25 points and five assists.
Tonight’s game features two of the best defenses in the league along with point guard standouts Irving and Mike Conley.
Time: 8:00pm ET
Arena: FedExForum, Memphis, TN
Memphis Grizzlies Starting Lineup
|PF||Jaren Jackson Jr.|
Memphis has stayed above the .500 mark this season thanks to a defense that is limiting several opponents to under 100 points in a season where scoring has been up across the league.
While the Grizzlies have struggled at times to get a balanced offensive effort, they seemed to have no problem doing that against the Cleveland Cavaliers in their 95-87 win on Wednesday night. To no surprise, they were paced by Marc Gasol and Mike Conley, but Kyle Anderson chipped in with 15, rookie Jaren Jackson Jr., had 11 and Garrett Temple also had 11 in the win.
Perhaps more impressive, however, was the stingy Memphis Grizzlies holding Cleveland to just nine first-quarter points. They also limited everyone not named Jordan Clarkson or Collin Sexton defensively.
Jackson had one of his best performances of his rookie campaign last Sunday against the Los Angeles Lakers with 27 points and nine rebounds in a game where five other players scored in double figures.
Boston Celtics Starting Lineup
Like the Grizzlies, the Celtics boast one of the league’s best defenses. Ever since Brad Stevens inserted Marcus Smart into the starting lineup, the Celtics have benefitted from having another wing defender who can guard multiple positions.
Stevens said a player as talented defensively as Smart should have been included on all-defensive teams in the past. While Smart has been snubbed in the past, it may be hard to look past him this season. Smart will welcome the opportunity to defend Mike Conley tonight.
The Celtics just got Al Horford back in the lineup, which helps even more on defense, but the Celtics were unable to put the clamps on James Harden, a task that’s been hard for several teams this season. Harden torched Boston for 45 points, being the difference maker in Thursday night’s loss.
The one area where Boston has had some struggles has been some consistency from some of their main role players. Gordon Hayward has not had the return from injury that he or Boston likely expected. He’s had some standout games where he looks like the Utah Jazz iteration of Hayward, but those have been few and far between as he has been averaging just 10.5 points per game this season.
Terry Rozier’s minutes are down this season with a healthy Irving back, and Rozier’s role has changed greatly. I think the common knowledge in the league is that Rozier is much better than the stats or minutes he is averaging, so there have been several rumors of a possible trade, but the change in minutes and role have greatly affected Rozier this season.
Memphis Grizzlies vs. Boston Celtics Betting Odds
The Celtics are the -2.5 favorite to win on the road tonight in Memphis. The over/under is 201 points and the moneyline has seen just slight movement, with the Celtics opening at -140 and live currently at -145.
Boston is 85-74 on the road, and 157-65 as the favorite, whereas the Grizzlies are 78-66 at home and 54-114 as the underdog.
Bet on Matchup
If you’re in Pennsylvania, you can bet on this matchup. Sports betting is legal in PA. Our top rated online sportsbook bonus offers can be found in our articles: Fanduel Sportsbook promo code, DraftKings Sportsbook promo code & Pointsbet promo code.
DraftKings & FanDuel Fantasy Picks
Tonight’s studs are Kyrie Irving ($9.6k) and Marc Gasol ($8.9k). Irving has historically played well against the Grizzlies, although this will be the first time he and Conley square off in years. Irving is projected for 42.63 points on FanDuel. Gasol, in his matchup with Horford, is expected to finish with 38.12 fantasy points. In his most recent game, Gasol had 53, so that could be a modest projection for the Spanish center.
Tatum ($6.9k) and Jackson ($6.3k) are value picks for this matchup. Tatum is expected to bounce back from his most recent performance with a projection of 27.61 points on FanDuel. Jackson, who had two 30+ point fantasy outings in the last week, is projected to finish with 26.16 points.
Find all of our Fanduel and Draftkings projections here: https://www.lineups.com/nba/nba-fantasy-basketball-projections.