NBA Picks: Clippers Trying Too Hard & Grizzlies Ready To Seize The Opportunity

Swinging Johnson

Tuesday, April 12, 2016 1:49 PM GMT

The Grizzlies invade the Staples Center tonight as they try to stave off the Mavericks and leapfrog the Trailblazers in the Western Conf standings. Let’s review the NBA odds and cash a winner.

Memphis Grizzlies (42-38 SU, 41-37-2 ATS)
The Grizzlies have tumbled down the Western Conference standings in the homestretch of the season, losing eight of nine and going 4-5 ATS during that stretch. Saturday night the NBA odds makers installed them as 13-point home underdogs against the seemingly invincible Golden State Warriors and their pursuit of the best regular season record in league history.

But a funny thing happened. The Grizzlies shook free from their funk and nearly toppled the defending champions, leading 78-70 after three quarters of play. Those who spotted the betting value in these home hounds and included them in their NBA picks had to be delirious with their tenacious defense, rendering the most feared offense in the league almost pedestrian as they shut down the Splash Brothers from downtown throughout the evening. Ultimately the Warriors roared back and claimed a 100-99 victory, tying them with the legendary ’96 Bulls with 72 wins on the season.

Memphis, undermanned again, played without the services of Marc Gasol (out for the season with a broken foot), Mike Conley (out for the season with an Achilles injury) and Tony Allen (hamstring).

 

Los Angeles Clippers (52-28 SU, 39-38-3 ATS)
The Clippers have won five straight and have locked up the 4th seed in the Western Conference with the only motivation left…staying healthy. Los Angeles hosts the Grizzlies tonight and wraps their regular season on the road tomorrow night with a date in the desert against the Phoenix Suns. The Clippers have ATS covers in three of five games during this five-game winning streak.

In their Sunday matinee against the Mavericks the Clippers took the court as 6 ½ point home chalk and barely covered the number in a 98-91 win. It was a game that Dallas needed far more than the Clips but any hope Dallas had of upsetting LA vanished in the third quarter when the Clips outscored the Mavs 27-12. Blake Griffin recently returned from a three-month absence and had his best game since coming back from injury, despite a first half that saw him shoot 2-of-11 from the floor. His second half was a welcomed change as Griffin wound up with 17 points, 11 boards and seven assists. Jamal Crawford led the team with 22 points off the bench while J.J. Reddick was 4-for-4 from beyond the arc and 8-of-10 overall from the floor for 20 points. DeAndre Jordan netted 14 points and hauled down 10 rebounds in Sunday’s victory.

 

Betting Analysis
These clubs have met twice this season with the Clippers winning the first matchup in a 94-92 home victory back in November as seven-point favorites. The second meeting came on March 19th and was held in Memphis where the Grizzlies upset the Clippers 113-102 as nine-point home underdogs.

We are not sure, as of this writing, whether or not Tony Allen will be in uniform tonight for Memphis as he has been nursing a strained hamstring recently which kept him out of action in the Golden State game. But being undermanned is nothing new to the Grizzlies and despite their recent spiral, dropping eight of nine, they have played tough against two of the very best the league has to offer in Golden State and San Antonio.

The Grizzlies are 19-19 ATS on the road this season while the Clippers check in with a 19-20 ATS mark at home. There is no doubt LA has been rolling as of late but their fate is sealed in terms of playoff position and it would be prudent to limit the minutes of the starters and give the bench jockeys more time in the spotlight. Memphis has Dallas breathing down their backs for the sixth seed while Portland is only a half-game ahead with fifth place there for the taking.

In the nebulous stat of the game Memphis is 7-3 ATS in their last 10 Tuesday night games and we say they keep it close enough to make it 8-3 tonight.

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Free NBA Pick: Memphis +7 ½
Best Line Offered: at Heritage