Memphis hopes to break its four-game road losing streak when it heads north to Minnesota for a battle with the Timberwolves.
Check out our in-depth analysis and game prediction below and see whether we believe the Grizzlies have a shot at curbing this landslide. Also, take a look at the current odds, projected starting lineups, and updated injury reports for both teams.
Memphis Grizzlies Vs. Minnesota Timberwolves Betting Odds
The Memphis Grizzlies are three-point road favorites against Minnesota on Friday night. Memphis will be without Danny Green, who is set to return on February 1st, as well as Steven Adams and John Konchar. Desmond Bane is listed as questionable due to knee soreness.
Meanwhile, Minnesota will still miss Karl Anthony-Towns, Jordan McLaughlin, and Taurean Prince. Rudy Gobert is also day-to-day leading into this matchup.
Memphis Grizzlies Vs. Minnesota Timberwolves Prediction
The Grizzlies’ road, and Western Conference, struggles continue; they have dropped four straight games, all away from FedEx Forum, and are barely over .500 in the Western Conference.
Despite creating a solid gap between themselves and the third-place Sacramento Kings, this Memphis team still has not truly dominated the West.
Now, matters become even more complicated with Steven Adams out for the next three-to-five weeks due to a PCL (knee) sprain.
Adams is imperative to this basketball team; he leads the NBA in offensive rebounds and offensive rebounding percentage while setting on-ball and off-ball screens at a high level.
While that all sounds much less flashy than scoring points, Adams’ worth should not be underestimated.
Memphis is still a great basketball team, but it desperately needs a win in this one. In order to do that, the Grizzlies will have to team rebound, defend at a high level (i.e., not giving up backdoor layups and putbacks), and score in bunches.
They are capable of all of those things, but will we see that on Friday night?
Meanwhile, things have gone from bad to worse for the Timberwolves, a team that was projected to be amongst the top seeds in the Western Conference before the year began. Now, they are holding onto dear life for ninth place, as there is merely one game between them and the No. 12 seed.
I can’t back the Grizzlies in this game, in good conscience. They have struggled closing out games on the road, and three points are too much when they are having issues winning altogether.
If Gobert plays, this matchup gets even tougher as Memphis isn’t half the rebounding team it usually is when Adams is on the floor. I’ll take the Wolves against the spread.
- Memphis is 8-15-1 ATS on the road in 2022-23
- Minnesota is 13-13 ATS at home in 2022-23
- The combined over record of these two teams is 46-49-2 in 2022-23
The key matchup here belongs to Rudy Gobert and the Grizzlies frontcourt, which is going to be thin without Steven Adams playing. See below if Memphis will be able to keep Gobert off the glass or if it will be a long night for the Grizz.
Rudy Gobert vs. Grizzlies Frontcourt
Rudy Gobert has had arguably his worst season since the 2017 campaign. However, even then, he was averaging over two blocks per game, which he has been unable to do this season.
Still, Gobert shows flashes and glimpses of what made him dominant in Utah. His length, height, timing, and strength make him a tough guy to box out on either side of the floor.
Enter: Memphis. The Grizzlies are undoubtedly one of the best rebounding teams in the NBA, ranking second in total rebounding rate and offensive rebounding percentage.
However, Memphis will be short Steven Adams due to a sprained PCL he recently suffered. In many ways, Adams drives the rebounding presence for the Grizzlies; it is easy to want to rebound more when Adams is working that hard.
Unfortunately, they will not have to rely on Xavier Tillman, Santi Aldama, Jaren Jackson Jr, and Brandon Clarke to fill the gaps. Memphis will still be a decent rebounding team in the meantime, but Gobert and the Wolves have an advantage here. Advantage: Gobert.
Memphis Grizzlies Starting Lineup
Minnesota Timberwolves Starting Lineups
Memphis Grizzlies Injuries: Steven Adams (Out), Danny Green (Out), John Konchar (Out), Desmond Bane (Q)
Minnesota Timberwolves Injuries: Karl Anthony-Towns (Out), Taurean Prince (Out), Jordan McLaughlin (Out), Rudy Gobert (Q)