NBA Picks: Back Short-Handed Grizzlies +10.5 vs. Struggling Bucks

Jake Walker

Thursday, March 17, 2016 4:49 PM UTC

Thursday, Mar. 17, 2016 4:49 PM UTC

The Memphis Grizzlies (39-29) visit the Bradley Center to take on the Milwaukee Bucks (29-39). The Bucks are favored by 10.5 points on the NBA odds board and the total is set at 202.

Memphis Grizzlies
The Memphis Grizzlies have lost their last three games, including last night's 114-108 setback against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Lance Stephenson led the way with 24 points and 11 rebounds and JaMychal Green added 18 points. Memphis was without Marc Gasol, Mike Conley and Zach Randolph, who are all dealing with injuries and are expected to miss this game as well. The Grizzlies are still in fifth-place in the Western Conference, four games ahead of the Trail Blazers.

The Grizzlies score just 99.1 points per game (24th in the league) and shoot 44.2 percent from the floor (22nd in the NBA) and 33.2 percent from three-point range (29th in the league) and they pull down 41.5 rebounds per game (28th in the NBA). Memphis allows 100.6 points per game (eight in the league) and their opponents shoot 45.0 percent overall and 36.1 percent from beyond the arc and grab 43.5 rebounds per game.

With Gasol, Conley, Randolph and Vince Carter out, the Grizzlies will rely on Lance Stephenson (14.9 points and 5.3 rebounds in 13 games with the team) and Matt Barnes (9.5 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.1 steals) to carry the offense and keep them in the game. 


Milwaukee Bucks
The Milwaukee Bucks have lost three of their last four games to stay five games behind the Detroit Pistons for the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. The Bucks are coming off a poor showing in a 107-89 home loss against the Raptors on Tuesday. Giannis Antetokounmpo led the way in the setback with 18 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists in 35 minutes but the Bucks missed 16 of 22 shots in the third quarter and they couldn't stop Kyle Lowry, who had 25 points and 11 assists.

The Bucks average 99.4 points per game (23rd in the league) on 46.4 percent shooting overall (fifth in the NBA) and 35.1 percent shooting from three-point range and they pull down 41.9 rebounds per game. Defensively, Milwaukee allows 103.1 points per game (17th in the league) and their opponents shoot just 45.2 percent from the floor and 35.7 percent from beyond the arc and grab 43.4 rebounds per game.

Khris Middleton leads the Bucks with 18.5 points, 4.2 assists and 1.6 steals, Giannis Antetokounmpo averages 16.7 points and 7.7 rebounds and Greg Monroe adds 15.8 points and a team-best 9.4 rebounds.  


Betting Trends
The Grizzlies are 34-32 ATS, 12-8 ATS in the second half of the season, 10-4 ATS when playing on back-to-back days, 15-4 ATS after allowing 105 points or more and 24-13 ATS when playing against a team with a losing record.

The Bucks are 1-6 ATS in a home game where the total is between 200, 9-8 ATS as a favorite and 204.5 points, 1-4 ATS off an upset loss as a favorite. 


Final Analysis
The Bucks are a 10.5-point favorite on the NBA odds board and the total has been set at 202. This will be the second meeting of the season between these two teams. The Grizzlies beat the Bucks 103-83 in Memphis on January 28 but this time Memphis will be short-handed. That being said, I don't trust the 29-39 Bucks to cover 10.5 points, even if the game is played in Milwaukee against a Grizzlies team missing their best players. I like the Grizzlies +10.5 for my NBA picks.

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NBA Pick: Grizzlies +10.5
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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