Game 5 of this series will shift back to Memphis on Wednesday as the LA Clippers try and close out the series vs the Memphis Grizzlies. The game is scheduled for a 9:30 pm start time and it will be televised live on TNT. Currently the odds have Memphis favored by 6.5 points with the total sitting at 182.5 points for the contest.
Free Analysis: The Clippers needed overtime to outlast the Grizzlies on Monday night, and now look to close out Memphis on its home floor in Wednesday’s Game 5. Chris Paul had just two points in the fourth quarter on Monday and was unable to get a shot off before the final buzzer in regulation, but his mastery in overtime has the Clippers on the verge of winning a playoff series for just the second time in the last 36 years. Paul netted eight of his 27 points in the extra session to go with nine rebounds and seven assists as the Clippers downed the Grizzlies, 101-97, in Game 4 of this tightly-contested NBA first-round series. For the series, L.A. has outshot Memphis 50% FG to 44% FG, but has made just 64% of its free throws. Paul has been magnificent in this series with team highs in points (23.5 PPG), assists (8.8 APG) and steals (2.5 SPG). He’s made 47% from the floor, 43% from three-point range and 92% from the foul line. PF Blake Griffin is scoring 21.5 PPG on 57% FG, but has just 6.3 RPG, well below his 10.9 RPG during the regular season. PF Reggie Evans has picked up the rebounding slack with 8.3 RPG in just 21.3 MPG in the series. SG Nick Young has stepped up too, with 10.5 PPG on 56% FG in the series, including 15.0 PPG on 10-of-16 FG (6-of-7 threes) in the first two games in Memphis. The Clippers last won a playoff series in 2006, when they defeated the Denver Nuggets in the first round, and haven't been to the postseason since then. Memphis is just 3-10 ATS in its past 13 games this season and 16-18-1 ATS at FedEx Forum. PG Mike Conley had a huge effort in Game 4 with 25 points (10-of-15 FG), seven rebounds and eight assists. In his two home games in the series, Conley had 18.0 PPG, 7.0 APG and just 2.0 TOPG. SF Rudy Gay leads Memphis with 21.8 PPG in the series, scoring at least 19 points in each game. He’s excited to return home, having shot much better in Memphis (52% FG) than he did in the past two games in Los Angeles (34%). The rest of the Grizzlies have not had huge series. PF Zach Randolph has just 12.5 PPG on 42% FG, SG O.J. Mayo has 12.0 PPG on a woeful 31% FG and C Marc Gasol has posted a lackluster 10.3 PPG and 6.5 RPG in the series, a far cry from his 14.6 PPG and 8.9 RPG during the regular season. Only eight NBA teams have rallied to win a series after trailing 3-1 with Phoenix rebounding to top the LA Lakers in 2006 being the last.
Free Pick: Gonna go with the Host team here. Yes this series has been decided by a total of 13 points so far, but the biggest win by either team was by the Grizzlies (7 points) and on this floor. Prior to the game 1 collapse, the Grizzlies had won 11 in a row at home and while they did blow a huge lead in that first game, you have to remember that they still had a 27 point lead in that game. I've had the feeling that the Grizzlies have been the better team all series long and tonight they are in desperation mode, cause their is no tomorrow if they lose. Oddsmakers also feel that Memphis is the better team as the Grizzlies have been favored by 5.5 or more in all 3 home games now, while the Clipps have been favored by 3 and 2 points. Look for Memphis to have their most complete game tonight when they need it most and win this one by double digits.
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