Washington Wizards vs. Memphis Grizzlies Betting Analysis – March 10, 2021

By Dean McHugh in NBA
| March 10, 2021 6:13 am PDT

The NBA returns to league action following the All-Star break, and both teams will be hoping to begin their assault on the playoff positions. The Wizards are down in 12th in the Eastern Conference, and they know if they are going to stand any chance of making any of the playoffs spots, whether that be the automatic ones or the new pre-playoff places they need to start picking up wins. Memphis is in slightly better shape as they currently occupy the final pre-playoff spot in the West. Although there is a bit of a gap between themselves and 11th placed New Orleans, they will want to try and reach at least eighth if they can to give them two bites at the cherry to reach the playoffs.

The Grizzlies are enjoying a fruitful period against the Wizards, having won four of the previous five meetings. The last of which was a few days before the All-Star break when they dismantled the Wizards, easily winning by 14 points. Both teams shot well on the night, and we will be hoping for more of the same tonight. The Grizzlies also hold a superior record over the Wizards in Memphis as they have beaten them on five of the last six occasions.

Despite the Grizzlies averaging three more points than the Wizards over the previous ten encounters between them, the Wizards have led more often than not at halftime, so look for them to start fast tonight.

Here is my Wizards vs. Grizzlies betting preview.

Wizards vs. Grizzlies Match Odds

Wizards +3-110
Grizzlies -3-110
Wizards To Win+135
Grizzlies To Win-148
Over 237.5 Points-110
Under 237.5 Points-110

The spread has doubled since the betting opened, and on reflection, it looks about right, given the Grizzlies have averaged three more pointers than their opponents tonight over the previous ten head-to-head matchups. The total points look huge and could be worth considering taking on.

When they met a week ago, the Grizzlies received a start, albeit only a point. The points total on that night was 238.5, and they narrowly failed to reach that.

Wizards Analysis

Although the Wizards have lost two of their last three games, that is a lot to be pleased about their performances as of late. Firstly if you look at the bigger picture, they have only dropped three games in their previous 11 matches. Secondly, they beat the highly ranked Clippers the last time out in a hard-fought battle. What was even more impressive was the Wizards trailed by seven at halftime and clawed their way back to pick up a two-point victory.

The Wizards have identical records at home and on the road of seven wins and ten defeats. Although the records are negative, it does show that they are comfortable playing basketball anywhere. Their form on the road has improved recently as they have won four of their previous six away fixtures. This is despite playing against top-quality opposition in all six of those games.

Here are the latest betting trends for Washington:

Against The Spread

  • The Wizards have only lost two of their previous 11 matches.
  • They have only won one of the last seven games against the Grizzlies.
  • Washington has won five of their previous six road trips.
  • They have lost the last five games played in Memphis.

This shows what great form the Wizards come into this match in, but they need to continue that good form against the Grizzlies, which they have failed to do historically.

Points Total

  • Four of their last five games have gone under the betting total.
  • Only two of their previous seven games against the Southwest Division teams have failed to go under the points total.

This suggests that we could see fewer points tonight than the bookmakers are anticipating.

Other Pointers

  • Washington has won seven of their last nine games against teams from the West Coast.

This is self-explanatory.

The Wizards have an excellent offense that averages 114 points per game. They can hurt you in many ways, not least by driving the ball to the basket, which they seem to enjoy doing.

It’s no wonder they have scored so many points when you have the league’s leading points scorer in your ranks. Bradley Beal has continued to light up the NBA this season, and he has drawn many comparisons with the great Allen Iverson recently. Beal’s scoring ability, added to Russell Westbrooks‘s playmaking, is a spellbinding combination for the Wizards.

However, they haven’t been as good on the road from an attack point of view as they have averaged four fewer points per game.

Their defense is shockingly bad and has conceded on average 119 points per game, the second-worst defensive record in the NBA. Their defense is very ill-disciplined, and frankly, at times, defensive work is disregarded.

They have the lowest number of blocks made of any team in the league this year because they haven’t managed to get close enough to their opponents often enough.

The Wizards will miss Smith and Bryant tonight, who are both long-term absentees.

Grizzlies Analysis

The Grizzlies form is probably the opposite of the Wizards in that if you look over the previous three games, it seems decent, but zoom out and look at the last seven games; it’s perhaps not so good. They have struggled for consistency, and they have failed to win three games in a row since the end of January/beginning of February. They went into the All-Star break on the back of a nail-biting defeat against the Bucks. The Grizzlies didn’t particularly play brilliantly that night. However, they still managed to hang on to the Bucks’ coattails, and it seemed that they were going to pick up the victory until Jrue Holiday hit a jump shot with two seconds to go to snatch victory away from them.

Their form at home reads quite similar to the Wizards away record, with the only difference being the Grizzlies have lost one extra match. They have lost the previous two home games, but they did come against the Clippers and the Bucks, both of whom are having great seasons.

Here are the latest betting trends for Memphis:

Against The Spread

  • They have won four of their last five games.
  • The Grizzlies have only lost one of their previous five matches against teams based in the Eastern Conference.

Either the Grizzlies are playing superb right now, or the bookmakers have underestimated them. I suspect it’s a bit of both.

Points Total

  • All of their last six games have gone under the betting total.
  • Six of their previous eight matches against the Wizards have gone under the points total.
  • Only one of their last five home games has failed to go under the betting total.

Much like the Wizards trends, this suggests it could be a low-scoring game tonight.

Other Pointers

  • Memphis has only lost two of their previous ten matches against teams in the Southeast Division.
  • The Grizzlies have only lost one of the last five games that they entered as betting favorites.

This confirms their decent form.

The Grizzlies offense is lacking, not least of all in the shooting department. Their three-point shooting has been terrible, scoring at a rate of 35%.

However, their rebounding has been good, especially in attack, and gives them something to work with for the rest of the season.

They also pass the ball well and have made the fifth-highest number of assists in the NBA this season.

Their defense matches up exceptionally well to that of the Wizards offense as they are currently both ranked eighth in the league. They concede on average 110 points per game which keeps them competitive each night. It’s hard to see why they have done so well in defense as their stats don’t particularly read great. The only thing I can see that they are doing well is by making a high number of steals per game.

The Grizzlies aren’t blessed with an abundance of individual talent, and they rely on the team performing well, which they have done for most of this season. However, this can take its toll as every player needs to pull their weight, and in a long grueling season, fatigue can sometimes kick in. This is probably why they have decided to recall two players from the Memphis Hustle, the Grizzlies NBA G League affiliate side.

Memphis will be without Jackson Junior, who is out with a knee injury, and shooting guard Allen is questionable to feature as he recovers from a concussion.

Wizards vs. Grizzlies Betting Pick 

Both teams come into this game in good form and match up reasonably well, so this is challenging to call. The Wizards undoubtedly have better individual players, but the Grizzlies work better as a team. Generally, I would go with the better team as they can afford to have one or possibly two players have an off night and still win, whereas the team relying on their stars can’t.

  • Under 237.5 Points

One thing I can’t ignore is that both teams’ games have been consistently going under the betting total as of late. Considering their combined average is only 213 points over the last ten games between them, there is every reason to be optimistic this game will follow suit.



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