Nets vs. Grizzlies Free NBA Picks: Bet Memphis -11.5 at Home

Saturday, October 31, 2015 2:29 PM UTC

Saturday, Oct. 31, 2015 2:29 PM UTC

The Memphis Grizzlies have at least one more year before their window closes. The Brooklyn Nets are starting from scratch. Guess which team the NBA odds favor for Saturday.

Jason's 2015-16 Record as of Oct. 30: 1-2 ATS

Remember when the Memphis Grizzlies were the laughing stock of the NBA? Okay, they happened to be the Vancouver Grizzlies at the time, but still. Anyone who had to suffer through those horribly-managed teams knows what I'm talking about. It took a while for the franchise to gain some traction after it moved south, but here we are nearly 15 years later, and the Grizzlies are one of the better – and most consistent – teams in the Western Conference.

It's also been nearly 15 years since the New Jersey Nets were in the NBA Finals. They're the Brooklyn Nets now, of course, but other than the change of address, there aren't many similarities between the paths these two franchises have taken in the new millennium. The 2015-16 Nets look so bad, they've opened as 11.5-point road dogs on Saturday's NBA Odds Board.


Sometimes, the Bear Eats You
This year's Memphis squad looks pretty much the same as it did when head coach Dave Joerger arrived on the scene in 2013. They've still got their Big Three of PG Mike Conley, PF Zach Randolph and center Marc Gasol. They've still got shooting guards Tony Allen and Courtney Lee providing defense and 3-pointers, respectively. PG Beno Udrih is still around for depth purposes.

The rest of the supporting cast has changed somewhat. One of our favorites here at the home office, PF Brandan Wright, signed as a free agent after playing for three different teams last year. SF Matt Barnes is also on board after the Los Angeles Clippers deemed him expendable. Nate Silver's CARMELO projections at FiveThirtyEight have both Wright and Barnes finishing in plus territory on both offense and defense this year, and they've got the Grizzlies winning 51 games. Ho-hum, the usual.


You Don't Know Jack
The Nets, on the other hand, are projected to win 25 games. They've dumped ballast to get under the luxury tax, but it's hard to say they're rebuilding – certainly not the way teams like the Philadelphia 76ers are. Brooklyn is going with a veteran backcourt of PG Jarrett Jack and SG Wayne Ellington, supporting a plausible frontline of SF Joe Johnson, PF Thaddeus Young and center Brook Lopez.

Don't be fooled. Jack and Ellington aren't exactly Jason Kidd and Kerry Kittles out there. And the bench is an absolute mess, punctuated by the signing of center Andrea Bargnani to play meaningful minutes. It's going to be difficult to recommend Brooklyn for your NBA picks in any situation, and this Saturday (8:00 p.m. ET, YES), the Nets are playing on zero days of rest after getting creamed 102-75 by the San Antonio Spurs (–14 at home) in San Antonio. The Grizz were idle Friday. Give us a small bet on Memphis, recognizing that the Nets have some pride to fight for, and may the sphere be with you.

Free NBA Pick: Take the Grizzlies –11.5 (–113) at Pinnacle

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