The NBA opens up another week of action with a total of five games on the board for Monday night. One of the games will be between the streaking Denver Nuggets and the slumping Memphis Grizzlies. While this is not the most exciting game on Monday night, I believe there is a chance it is close. These two teams will meet up at 8:00 PM eastern time on January 28.
Denver has started the season with a record of 33-15 this season. The Nuggets are currently sitting comfortably in second place of the Western Conference. Denver is coming off two big wins in back to back on Friday and Saturday night against the Phoenix Suns and the Philadelphia 76ers. The Nuggets will look to keep the winning streak going with a win at home on Monday night.
The Grizzlies had a decent start to the season that had them in a playoff spot early in the season. Memphis has been doing really poorly as of late and it has made them take a big drop in the standings. The Grizzlies are in the fourteenth place of the Western Conference with a 20-30 record this season. Memphis has lost fourteen of their last sixteen games. The Grizzlies won their last game and will look to build up a winning streak against the Nuggets.
Monday night’s matchup between the Nuggets and the Grizzlies will be the third and final matchup of the season series. Denver and Memphis are both trending in opposite directions, but coming off a win in their last game. The Grizzlies will need to play like they did earlier in the season if they want to pull off the upset at home on Monday night.
The first matchup of this season’s series was hosted by the Grizzlies on November 7. Gary Harris had a solid night, dropping 20 points for the Nuggets. Trey Lyles had 16 points off the bench, while Jamal Murray added another 15 points. Marc Gasol had 20 points and 12 rebounds, while Jaren Jackson Jr. added another 20 points for Memphis. The Grizzlies were able to pull off the win at home 89-87.
The Nuggets hosted the second game of the season series on December 10. Mike Conley had a solid night as he dropped 19 points. The Grizzlies bench had a solid night as JaMychal Green, Shelvin Mack and Omri Casspi combined for 39 points. Nikola Jokic scored 27 points and 12 rebounds. Monte Morris added 20 points off the bench to help lead Denver to the win. The Nuggets were able to pull off a 105-99 win at home.
These two teams each took the first game of the season series at home. In the first two matchups though, Memphis was playing much better as they had a winning record going into both games. The Grizzlies have stumbled through their last sixteen games and I believe it may show again on Monday night as they play a red hot Nuggets team.
Three Point Shooting
Denver has been a solid team at shooting the three ball this season. The Nuggets have been able to make around 35.8 percent of their shots from behind the arc, which is top ten in the league. Denver’s three-point defense has been something special though. The Nuggets have held their opponents to a 34 percent three-point shooting, which is top five in the NBA.
The Grizzlies have struggled to consistently make their three-point shots this season. Memphis is in the bottom ten in the league with a 34.1 percent three-point percentage. The Grizzlies have been second worst in the NBA in three-point defense. Memphis has allowed their opponents to make around 37 percent of their three-point shots.
The Nuggets are a much better team at both shooting and defending the three ball. This could give a major advantage to Denver in Monday nights matchup. The Nuggets did a good job defending Memphis earlier in the season and with the Grizzlies defense struggling, I believe this could lead to a big win for Denver.
Nikola Jokic has been playing extremely well in his recent games. Jokic has averaged 20 points, 10.5 rebounds and 7.5 assists per game this season. Jamal Murray is averaging 18.5 points per game at the Point Guard spot. Both of Denver’s Shooting Guards have been doing well this season. Gary Harris is averaging 15 points, while Will Barton has averaged 12.5 points per game. Paul Millsap is averaging 12.5 points per game. Malik Beasley and Monte Morris are both averaging double digits in points this season as well.
The Grizzlies have been led by Mike Conley this season. Conley is averaging 20 points per game this season. Marc Gasol has averaged 15.5 points and 9 rebounds per game from the Center spot this season. Jaren Jackson Jr. has been off to a solid rookie season as he averaged 13.5 points per game. JaMychal Green is averaging 10.5 points off the bench this season.
Memphis could potentially matchup well with the Nuggets two best scorers. Jokic will go up against Gasol, which should be a good matchup to watch on Monday night. Conley and Murray will go against each other as well. The Nuggets depth though matches up really well against the Grizzlies, which will give them big edge in Monday night’s game.
Denver has been playing really well and I believe they will keep it going with a road win over the Grizzlies on Monday night. These two teams are tied 1-1 in the season series, but I believe that the Nuggets will knock off a struggling Memphis team. Denver has been a much better three-point shooting team and they have so many players that can step up. I do not believe the Grizzlies defense will be able to slow all of those players down to stay in the game.
BetOnline has the Nuggets listed as a -5 against the spread on Monday night. This is a decently sized spread for the road team, but with how much Memphis has been struggling, I believe Denver could cover this. The Nuggets are a much better team this season and it is games like this that they should be able to pull off a big win.