NBA Picks: Thunder vs. Grizzlies

Jeff Grant

Wednesday, March 20, 2013 11:58 AM GMT

The Memphis Grizzlies have held 58 of 66 opponents under the century mark offensively, as they prepare to take on the Oklahoma City Thunder Wednesday night.


Let’s take an early look at the NBA betting odds for this Western Conference affair, with the opening tip scheduled for 8:00 p.m. ET at the FedExForum.

Off a loss

Oklahoma City suffered a 114-104 loss to the Denver Nuggets as 9.5-point home favorites Tuesday night, which dropped the franchise 1.5 games back of the San Antonio Spurs for the top spot out West.

The Thunder are 29-6 straight up (SU) following a defeat dating back to the start of the 2011-12 campaign, while going 9-2 against the spread (ATS) in that situation in their last 11 opportunities.

Since the All-Star break

Memphis has been flying under the radar since the All-Star break, as its 12-3 record trails only the Denver Nuggets and Miami Heat over that period of time, which includes a 92-77 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves as 12.5-point home favorites Monday.

The Grizzlies are 24-15 SU and 23-15-1 ATS in March the last two-plus seasons, with the UNDER going 20-19 in those 39 contests. 

Previous meetings 

NBA handicappers will find that each team has picked up a victory in the season series thus far, with both meetings taking place at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City. 

The Thunder have tipped off as the NBA betting odds favorite in their last seven games versus the Grizzlies, which includes a 106-89 triumph when laying 9.5 points in the last meeting on Jan. 31, while going OVER the posted total of 190.

Memphis had five players score in double figures in picking up a 107-97 victory as 5.5-point road underdogs in the first meeting, with Rudy Gay scoring a team-high 28 points, but he’s now playing for the Toronto Raptors. 

All about defense 

The Thunder are 0-3 ATS as an underdog when being held under the century mark in scoring during the 2012-13 campaign, which is important to consider when making your NBA betting picks Wednesday, especially when facing the top defense in the league. 

Memphis has allowed 100 or more points just eight times in 66 games, while limiting 11 of its last 12 opponents to below 80 shot attempts.

[gameodds]5/222119/43/us[/gameodds]

Prediction 

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Grizzlies as one of their NBA picks, as they’ve gone 26-8 ATS in their last 34 home games versus a team with a winning road record. 

I wouldn’t go crazy in terms of wagering in this spot, as the line has already moved three points from its opening number. 

NBA Pick:  Memphis Grizzlies -1.5 at Pinnacle