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Wednesday, November 20, 2019
PELICANS VS TRAIL BLAZERS
Venue: Smoothie King Center | Start: 12:00pm AEDT
The New Orleans Pelicans will go for their second win in three days when they host the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday night. New Orleans is coming off a 108-100 win over the Golden State Warriors that featured a team-high 26 points from J.J. Redick and 22 points from Jrue Holiday. Rookie Jaxson Hayes added a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. The Pelicans opened the season with seven losses in their first eight games, but they have bounced back to win three of their past five despite a slew of injuries. Redick has provided a calming influence, and the 35-year-old is shooting a terrific 46.4 percent from beyond the arc this season. The Pelicans must prepare for a dynamic backcourt with the Trail Blazers, who rely on heavy minutes from Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum. Portland could be sluggish to start because they played on the road against the Houston Rockets on Monday and were drubbed 132-108. McCollum finished with 25 points on 10-for-19 shooting, but Portland offered few other bright spots. This is the teams’ first meeting since March 15, when Portland pulled away for a 122-110 win.
Win: Portland Trail Blazers
Line: New Orleans Pelicans +2.5
Total Points: Over 219.5
GRIZZLIES VS WARRIORS
Venue: FedExForum | Start: 12:00pm AEDT
The Golden State Warriors get their first look at Ja Morant — and perhaps a glimpse into their future — when they visit the Memphis Grizzlies on Tuesday night. Currently the league’s losingest team at 2-12, the Warriors are on pace for 70 losses and the favorite’s role in next spring’s NBA Lottery. Would they take a Morant-type point guard if given a chance? Or would they prefer a Zion Williamson-type big man? They’ll get a look at one of each in the Grizzlies’ Morant and Jaren Jackson Jr., the fourth pick of the 2018 draft. Memphis’ young dynamic duo has contributed an average of 32.9 points to the club’s 5-8 start, one that features recent wins over San Antonio and Utah. Warriors coach Steve Kerr observed that his team, currently without seven injured players, ran out
of gas in Sunday’s loss at New Orleans, and now must endure a road back-to-back that continues Wednesday in Dallas. Even while the Grizzlies were struggling the last two seasons, they played the NBA Finals-bound Warriors tough, winning two of the three head-to-heads contested in Memphis. The Warriors have lost seven in a row, their longest losing streak since 2012.
Win: Memphis Grizzlies
Line: Golden State Warriors +6.5
Total Points: Under 222.5
KINGS VS SUNS
Venue: Golden 1 Center | Start: 2:00pm AEDT
The Phoenix Suns and Sacramento Kings will engage in a rematch of their season opener when the teams meet in Sacramento on Tuesday night. Expectations might have been higher for Sacramento for the opening tipoff, but Phoenix has emerged as the surprise team in the first month of the 2019-20 campaign. The Suns have won seven of 12 games to start the season and showcase a resilient group that includes Devin Booker, Kelly Oubre Jr., Aron Baynes, Jevon Carter, Dario Saric and others. But Phoenix will play on short rest after a 99-85 beating at home against the Boston Celtics on Monday night. Sacramento had the day off to rest, which its players likely enjoyed after winning three of their past four games. The Kings lost their first five games in a row, including a 124-95 defeat to the Suns on Oct. 23, but they have recovered nicely to win five out of seven games since then. Injuries also have sapped Sacramento, which is without Marvin Bagley (thumb) and De’Aaron Fox (ankle) for an extended period. That creates extra responsibility for players such as top scorer Buddy Hield, who is averaging 19.9 points in 12 starts. Veteran forward Harrison Barnes also provides steady production with 14.8 points per contest.
Win: Sacramento Kings
Line: Sacramento Kings -2.5
Total Points: Under 220.5
LAKERS VS THUNDER
Venue: Staples Center | Start: 2:30pm AEDT
The NBA trots out its generally unpopular home-and-home scheduling over the next four days when the Oklahoma City Thunder and Los Angeles Lakers begin a two-game, two-site sequence at the Staples Center on Tuesday night. Criticized by some as a concept that should be saved for the postseason, the clubs will get two days to find their way to Oklahoma City, where a rematch will take place Friday. By then, the Thunder will be somewhat used to odd scheduling, as they will have become the fourth team this season to experience two games in two nights in LA, following Monday’s thrilling 90-88 loss to the Clippers with Tuesday’s meeting with the Lakers. In the previous three occurrences, the visitor has had no luck on the second night, going 0-3. The LA teams have also done well on the first night, going 3-1, with the lone loss coming when Toronto beat the Lakers earlier this month. The Thunder have prevailed over the Lakers in 21 of their last 28 meetings, but that was in a previous life, one in which Oklahoma City was led by Russell Westbrook and Los Angeles didn’t have Anthony Davis. The matchup features a Lakers team riding a four-game winning streak against a Thunder squad that has yet to win in five road outings this season.
Win: Los Angeles Lakers
Line: Los Angeles Lakers -8.5
Total Points: Over 220.5