ESB “GAME OF NIGHT”: GRIZZLIES @ PELICANS (1-31)!
ELITE SHADOW BETS STAFF NBA “GAME OF THE NIGHT” FULL PREVIEW: MEMPHIS @ NEW ORLEANS (1-31)
WE FINALLY GET TO SEE NBA’S TOP 2 PICKS FACE OFF FOR “GAME OF NIGHT”: (GRIZZLIES @ PELICANS) (1-31)
VEGAS BETTING ODDS: NEW ORLEANS PELICANS (-6) vs. MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES ~ TOTAL: (241)
MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES: (24-24) – (10-11 AWAY) *** NEW ORLEANS PELICANS: (19-29) – (9-15 HOME)
Tonight is one of those fun “FIRSTS” as we get to see the top 2 Picks in the last NBA Draft and two picks we expect to be part of the face of the league for the next decade ahead. The Grizzlies had the #2 pick and they selected PG Ja Morant and since he’s been healthy since day 1, we can for sure tell you that he was the best #2 pick they could’ve made as he is already showing he’s going to be an All Star for years to come. The #1 pick though, Zion Williamson, has missed the entire season except for these past 4 games so it’s hard to really grade him just yet. He has though already shown flashes that if he stays healthy, he can be the next coming of Lebron James. Tonight we get the chance to see the first of many times these two will face off against each other.
A few weeks ago we wrote an article calling the Memphis Grizzlies the “STOCK UP” team to watch ahead. They are basically the hottest team in the NBA of late, winning 10 of their last 12 games. Prior to this hot streak, they were just (14-22). Now they are evened up at (24-24) and holding a Playoff spot if the season ended today. For the most part this young team is already way ahead of schedule and it will be interesting to see how they fare tonight against a team that is basically their mirror image, another team full of mostly very young guys.
Right now Memphis is in the 8th and final Playoff spot, and New Orleans sits at #12 spot, 5 full games behind the Grizzlies. As we near the All Star Break we will see a second half of really 5 teams vying to grab that final Playoff spot and these two will surely be two of those five (barring any major injuries for either of these two).
The amazing part of these two teams is the depth they both throw out there on a nightly basis. Many of the elite teams go with a shorter rotation, but both these teams are proving more works well too. The Grizzlies have 6 players averaging double digits in points and 11 players now play an average of at least 17 minutes per game. The Pelicans have players averaging double digits points and 8 players play an average of 20 minutes per game or more. These numbers of minutes played will surely keep legs fresh for the second half ahead.
Both teams are high flyers, loving to play at a fast pace and so they both play very high scoring, run and gun paced games. The Grizzlies have actually played 10 games in their last 13 games where they scored between 110 and 130 points. They actually scored between 121-130 points six times. In the last 7 Pelicans they have scored 117, 106, 123, 125, 126, 130, 138 points and 3 of Zions 4 games so far have been at 117 or more. The Pelicans are (2-2) with Zion in the lineup with 3 of those 4 games being played ay Home (venue for tonight’s game). Zions minutes are slowly going up each game as they ease him back from his long stint out of action from injury. He’s now up to 24 minutes per game average and he’s really been impressive. He’s averaging 18 points and 8.3 rebounds per game. He’s shown in spurts how dominating he can be.
Memphis comes in winners of 4 straight games, and 10 of it’s last 12. They lost at Boston (nothing bad to lose there) and the other loss came to this same Pelicans team in Memphis 126-16 a few weeks ago. The Pelicans did not have Zion back yet for that game. It should be noted that in the two losses the Grizzlies have had their past 12 games they did allow 119 and 126 points. Five of the past 7 Pelicans games they have scored at least 123 points.
It’s a great thing to see Zion on the court after missing most of the season and to see if he is as good as they tell us is. Nobody should expect that he is anything but a Superstar in this league for years to come as he simply is super fast for a guy his size and he can shoot the 3 and is just so smooth inside the paint. Ja Morant has been really better than expected and his expectations were high. The question was could he duplicate vs. real men in the best league in the world the way he did in a small College Conference. He to me has been even better in the NBA as he has a much better supporting cast to take advantage of his amazing skills set. There will be a ton of hype for these two young stars meeting up for the first time and I highly doubt either disappoints. Memphis as a team is playing as good as they could’ve ever imagined with their best dreams. The Pelicans are still a work in progress as they get a feel for Zion. I love the fact both play deep lineups and that keeps fresh legs for the fast pace both really love to play. As you can see by the insanely high Total set here tonight (241). The Bookmakers have learned most of their bettors are going to bet these two “OVER” and you can’t blame them. The Pelicans move faster than anyone I’ve watched this year as Defense is no longer a signature of too many teams. I love the way young Pelicans F Brandon Ingram is playing, now out of Lebron’s shadow in LA. I also love Derrick Favors, who in just 24 minutes of play is grabbing 10 Rebounds a game for the Pelicans. I also love the Grizzlies Center Jonas Valanciunas who is averaging 15 points and 10 rebounds and doing the dirty work this young team needs.
It’s very tough to bet an Over that high but that’s the side we’d lean to here. The Pelicans laying 6 to a team they just beat not too long ago is a bit to high I feel to lay to a team streaking and playing just fantastic ball the past month. We won’t be betting this one but it will be really fun to watch this first of many match ups between two of rhe rising stars in this league and two of the younger teams that will be playing hard the rest of the season to try and steal that #8 Playoff spot.
Enjoy tonight’s fun game and may all your wagers be WINNING ones and have a great Super Bowl Weekend ahead. It’s going to be a really exciting weekend but be sure not to over bet and never bet what you can’t afford to lose.
ELITE SHADOW BETS STAFF