Who: Memphis Grizzlies vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
Where: FedexForum in Memphis, TN
When: 7:00 PM CT
How to Listen: 92.9 ESPN Memphis
How to Watch: FoxSports Southeast
Grizzlies vs. Thunder coverage
More from OKC: Welcome to Loud City
Recently from Oklahoma City (6-4)
Kevin Durant tweaked a hamstring last week and has missed the last two games for OKC. That's not a problem for Russell Westbrook when the Thunder take on the likes of the 76ers, but they got thumped last night against the upstart Celtics. The combined backcourt of OKC shot 12 of 46 (26%) from the field – very Grizzliesque.
Recently from Memphis (5-6)
It's been a slow build of traction for the Grizzlies so far, but we've seen some positive developments over the past 5 games with Memphis finally winning the last two on their schedule. It's no coincidence that the Grizzlies reached 100+ points for the first time in those two wins since their last victory, a 103-89 posting on Sacramento. It's good to see their offense flowing since they're still sitting at the bottom of the league in Effective FG% (44.6%). We've yet to see the Grizzlies beat top level competition, and a Durant-less Thunder team on a SEGABABA seems like a good teeing off spot.
Things I think
Limit Westbrook. Duh, right? Last season the Thunder never beat the Grizzlies without the services of Kevin Durant. You feel good about your chances of winning if you hold Westy under 30 pts. You feel even better if he's under 20 pts.
Get the Thunder centers in foul trouble. Both Steven Adams and Enes Kanter are capable of racking up a lot of quick fouls. Adams should be the primary focus as Kanter isn't really capable of defending anyone anyway. You want to make Serge Ibaka and Nick Collison work as hard as they possibly can.
Slow it down and make em work. The Thunder don't win a ton of games when the pace gets slow and the score stays under 100 points. The Grizzlies do.
Put Courtney Lee back in the starting lineup. Joerger should have no temptation to start Jeff Green with the Thunder starting the likes of Andre Roberson (6'7) and Anthony Morrow (6'5) on the wing.
This should be a really fun night. I could see the Grizzlies having a little extra pep in their step as they don the beautiful Memphis Sounds throwback jerseys for the first time. Look good, play well.