Grizzlies at Thunder Picks and Game 5 NBA Odds
by Dave Schwab - 5/15/2013
The Memphis Grizzlies find themselves just one win away from booking a ticket to the Western Conference Finals when they square off against the Oklahoma City Thunder this Wednesday night at Chesapeake Energy Arena. This Game 5 clash is scheduled to tip off at 9:30 p.m. (ET), and it will be broadcast nationally on TNT.
This past Monday night the Grizzlies overcame a 17-point deficit to win Game 4 of this series 103-97 in overtime as five-point home favorites. The victory was their third straight to open up a 3-1 lead in this best-of-seven series after losing Game 1. The total has gone “over” in two of the last three games.
Oklahoma City came into the conference semifinals fresh off a 4-2 opening-round victory over Houston in which it went 3-3 against the spread and the total stayed “under” in five of the six games. The Thunder won Game 1 of this series 93-91 as 3.5-point home favorites with the total staying under the 186.5-point totals line.
Grizzlies at Thunder Betting Storylines
Memphis finished in fifth place in the West and drew the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round. After a pair of losses in the first two games on the road, it got back to the basics of spreading the ball around and playing defense to reel off four straight victories to end that series in six games. The Grizzlies held the Clippers to an average of 90.8 points in those four games, and have kept the defensive pressure of the Thunder as well by allowing an average of 91 points in the first four games of this series.
On the other end of the court, the trio of Marc Gasol, Zach Randolph and Mike Conley are scoring a combined 56.1 of the team’s 98.1 average points per game in the postseason. Gasol and Randolph have also combined for 16.8 rebounds while Conley is chipping in 7.3 assists a game. Overall, the team is shooting 43.9 percent from the field and 32.4 percent from three-point range, but finding ways to hit the shots when it needs to the most.
When Russell Westbrook went down with a season-ending knee injury in Game 2 against the Rockets, so did the Thunders’ chances of returning to the NBA Finals for the second straight season. The pressure has been dialed up way too high on Kevin Durant to fill this huge hole in the lineup on his own, and the result has been a 3-5 SU record since then and a costly 1-7 ATS.
Durant led the team in scoring in the regular season with 28.1 points a game, and he has elevated this number to 31.8 in the playoffs. However, this has not come close to replacing the production that Westbrook brought to the table. The Thunder ended the season ranked third in the league in scoring with 105.7 points a game, but they have now failed to surpass the 100-point mark in their last four games. The problem has been the inability of anyone else on this roster to step up their game to help fill the void. Heading into Game 5, this team suddenly has “quit” written all over it, especially after failing to hold onto the large lead in Game 4 that would have turned this series into a best-of-three with two games at home.
Grizzlies at Thunder NBA Game 5 Betting Odds and Trends
The Grizzlies are 6-0 ATS in their last six games following a SU win and 4-0 ATS in their last four road games. The total has gone over in five of their last six games on the road.
The Thunder are 0-4 ATS in their last four home games but 14-6 ATS in their last 20 games following a SU loss. The total has stayed under in six of their last seven games at home.
Head-to-head in this matchup, the road team is 8-3 ATS in the last 11 meetings, and the total has gone over in 20 of the last 26 games played in Oklahoma City.
Grizzlies at Thunder Picks and Game 5 Predictions
Beating Oklahoma City on its home court is no small feat no matter who is in the lineup for the Thunder, but whatever wind that was left in their sails completely escaped after Monday night’s collapse down the spread. They will try and put on a good show this Wednesday night, but the play is on Memphis winning this game SU to mercifully end this series in five games.
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