Memphis Must Win In LA
The Memphis Grizzlies protected home-court advantage, winning Game 5 against the Los Angeles Lakers. Now to force a Game 7, which would be played in Memphis, the Grizzlies have to beat the Lakers in Los Angeles in Game 6 on Friday.
In Game 5, the Grizzlies stars finally shined with Ja Morant and Desmond Bane combining for 64 points to lead their team at home. Outside of eight minutes in the third quarter, the Grizzlies were in control for most of the game, taking advantage of what looked like an exhausted Lakers team.
A 26-2 run that spanned the end of the third and the start of the fourth quarter played a massive role in Memphis’ 116-99 win.
With this Game 6 being played in Los Angeles, the NBA lines are leaving heavily toward the home team. The Grizzlies went 16-25 on the road, which would make sense, validating their status as underdogs.
Grizzlies Others Have to Contribute
Other players must make an impact for the Memphis Grizzlies to stay alive in this series. When you look at the games that Memphis won or made close, players other than Morant stepped up. In Game 2, Xavier Tillman Sr. had an excellent game, scoring 22 points with 13 rebounds and five offensive. Morant missed that game with a hand injury, still headlining NBA news.
Ja Morant and Desmond Bane are the first pair of teammates in Grizzlies history to record 30+ PTS, 10+ REB, and 5+ AST in a Playoff game. pic.twitter.com/HUK7LZFfKy
— NBA History (@NBAHistory) April 27, 2023
Then, in Game 4, which was forced into overtime, Bane went off for 36 points to lead all scorers. Bane carried that momentum into Game 5, scoring 33 points and having his best performance from 3-point land in the series, going 4 of 9. Morant still had a great game with 31 points and seven assists.
In the games where either Mirant, Bane, or Jaren Jackson Jr. has gone off, the Grizzlies obviously lost, with Game 5 being the only time the two of them played well together. This is a series in which the supporting cast has to make a significant impact. Bane and Tillman are just some names that need a big Game 6 to help out Morant.
The lack of impact from players like Luke Kennard and Tyus Jones has been surprising. Neither have been able to hold their own on the court defensively and have been targeted by the Lakers’ offense. Both need to at least impact this game, especially Kennard with his floor spacing.
Lakers Take Advantage of Home Court
This is when the Los Angeles Lakers must end the series because it could be a challenge if they have to go back to Memphis. LeBron James is 38 years old, and playing every other day, while averaging over 38 minutes has to be taking a toll. On top of that, every time Anthony Davis hits the floor, the whole Laker fan base takes a deep breath.
However, despite that, the Lakers have the fourth-best NBA Finals odds in the Western Conference. Much of that is still due to the star power on the roster and the supporting cast, with Rui Hachimura and Austin Reaves playing massive roles in some of Los Angeles’ wins. Hachimura cooled off slightly in the last two games, but D’Angelo Russell is becoming more impactful.
“Tonight, I was sh—. And I’ll be better in Game 6.” LeBron James expresses the disappointment felt in his performance tonight. pic.twitter.com/5OlfN6gqbO
— Spectrum SportsNet (@SpectrumSN) April 27, 2023
In Games 3 and 4, the Crypto.com Arena was loud, which might help lean NBA betting in favor of the Lakers for this game. The fans could be a massive factor in Game 6, something the Lakers sorely missed on the road. The Lakers lacked energy in Game 5. Maybe having just won an overtime game tired them out, but the team did not look like itself outside of Davis scoring 31 points with 19 rebounds, dominating a favorable matchup. James even mentioned himself as not playing well in the postgame press conference.
Now back on their home court, this is the chance for James to have a massive offensive game. While he has had a solid series, James has often settled for jumpers instead of attacking the rim, saving himself for the fourth quarter. He has struggled from 3-point range, shooting 16.7%. James played downhill in Game 4 and will have to do so again in a crucial Game 6.
Grizzlies vs Lakers Game Injuries
Grizzlies vs Lakers Head-to-Head
The Grizzlies have yet to beat the Lakers in the regular season or playoffs in Los Angeles this season. The Lakers have also covered the spread in all four home games against the Grizzlies.
Grizzlies vs Lakers Game Information
- Game: Grizzlies (51-31) vs Lakers (43-39)
- Location: Crypto.com Arena, Los Angeles, CA
- Day/Time: Friday, April 28, 10:30 p.m. EST
- Grizzlies vs Lakers Live stream: NBA Game Pass
Grizzlies vs Lakers Betting Lines
Grizzlies vs Lakers Picks and Prediction
This seems like a must-win game for the Lakers and James might treat it like that, which could be concerning for the Grizzlies. When James decided to take control at the end of Game 4, Memphis could not do much to stop him.
The Los Angeles Lakers are listed at -195 in our Vegas NBA odds. This means that if you wager $100 on the Lakers, you have a chance to win $51. The Memphis Grizzlies are +165, offering a chance to win $165 on a $100 wager.
The implied probability attached to the betting lines gives the Los Angeles Lakers a 66.10% chance to win, with the Memphis Grizzlies at 37.74%.
Grizzlies vs Lakers Trends
Grizzlies vs Lakers Edge
Grizzlies vs Lakers Results
Grizzlies vs Lakers Game Summary
Lakers vs Grizzlies Previous (Apr 26, 2023)
At home, the Grizzlies should be able to do enough to extend this series at least one more game. They had the NBA’s best record at home, which should make them a decent option for NBA picks, along with the extra motivation to keep their season alive.
The Lakers have already won in Memphis, taking Game 1, but Morant left that game early with his hand injury.