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Nuggets vs. Grizzlies Preview: Memphis goes for the rare win in Denver

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Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

The Gasol/Conley/Randolph/Allen rendition of the Memphis Grizzlies has won twice in Denver against the Nuggets in the past three years, and that is actually a remarkable feat when you consider that the Grizzlies as a franchise had only accomplished this three times between 1996 and 2011. What's equally as impressive is that both of the recent wins have come on SEGABABA's on the road.

Will the Grizzlies again be able to muster the strength to pull off a win against a struggling Nuggets team?

2014/15 NBA Season
at
2014/15:
24-8 (11-4 away)
2014/15:
13-20 (9-8 home)
January 3rd, 2015
Pepsi Center, Denver, CO
8:00 PM CDT
Fox SportSouth / 92.9 FM ESPN
Possible Starters
Mike Conley PG Ty Lawson
Courtney Lee SG Arron Afflalo
Tony Allen SF Wilson Chandler
Jon Leuer PF Kenneth Faried
Marc Gasol C Timofey Mozgov
2014/15 Advanced Stats
93.8 (27th) Pace 98.8 (4th)
106 (T-8th) OEff 106.2 (T-6th)
102.0 (11th) DEff 105.2 (23rd)
49.7 (17th) RebR 51.3 (T-7th)

Injurt Report

Denver: WILSON CHANDLER - Questionable. DARRELL ARTHUR - Questionable. DANILO GALLINARI - Out. JAVALE MCGEE - Out. RANDY FOYE - Out.

Memphis: ZACH RANDOLPH - Questionable.

Recently for the Nuggets

Denver is on a 3-game losing skid, giving up an average of 111 points in each of those games.Ty Lawson has been leading the way for the Nuggets recently, but any one of their starters is capable of having a big game. Arron Afflalo has been struggling to find his stroke from long range, shooting 33.6% on the season and going 5/32 (15.6%) over his last 8 games.. Kenneth Faried is averaging over 16 rebounds a game in his past five starts and generally filling up the stat sheet every night.

Recently for the Grizzlies

Conversely for Memphis, they're on a 3-game winning streak while just giving up an average of 96 points per game. Mike Conley is making another January push for an All-Star bid, and he's recently found his shooting stroke again, going 17/27 (63%) from three in his last 5 games. Marc Gasol is averaging a 20/10 over the past 8 games and should look to redeem himself after a fairly sloppy performance last night (5 turnovers... gasp!!)

Three Things to Keep Eyes On

  • Kenneth Faried vs. Grizzlies: The Manimal hasn't historically really gone off on the Grizzlies too often, but the Grizzlies have struggled with the athletic guys for much of the season, and there's no James Johnson coming through that door. Combine this with the likelihood that Z-Bo sits out again tonight and I foresee a big game for Faried unless Marc Gasol goes DPOY.
  • Maybe some Nick Calathes? Some of the Grizzlies will definitely show fatigue tonight. Nick Calathes has fresh legs after DNP's for the past five games, and he has the added benefit of being able to facilitate for others. Let Nicky Baskets run all over the court and save some of our guys some exhaustion with a few of those crisp passes.
  • Maybe some Jarnell Stokes? Maybe even, say, 10 minutes of the Young Bull? Not only are the Grizzlies on a SEGABABA, but the Nuggets are still a team that loves to push, push, run, push, and run some more. The Grizzlies will need a physical presence against the athleticism of the Denver front court, and our man Jarnell is pure steel.

Jarnell Colossus