Bucks vs. Grizzlies Odds
|Time||8 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
The Milwaukee Bucks travel to Memphis to face the Grizzlies on Thursday night.
After a disappointing 97-92 loss to the Rockets on Sunday, the Bucks bounced back in a big way on Tuesday night with a 128-111 victory against the Warriors. That marked Milwaukee’s 20th win of the season, the second most in the Eastern Conference. Memphis isn’t far behind Milwaukee in the win column, entering this matchup with a 18-9 record.
This game features two teams in the top two of their respective conference, with both having their eyes on closing the gap between them and the No. 1 seed. Will we see the Bucks get the job done on the road, or will the Grizzlies defend their home court and win their seventh game in a row? Let’s look at the odds and make a pick.
The Milwaukee Bucks put together an impressive showing Tuesday against Golden State. The Bucks shot 55% from the floor and 41% from behind the arc, well above their season averages of 45.9% and 35.2%, respectively.
Returning to their home court may have played a factor in that result. Now that the Bucks are on the road again, it’s fair to have some doubts about how they may perform.
Milwaukee has played significantly worse offensively on the road this season. The Bucks have an Offensive Rating of 103.4 on the road, which ranks 30th in the NBA. To put that into perspective, their Offensive Rating at home is 117.3, fourth in the NBA.
Generally speaking, the Bucks haven’t been the most efficient shooting team this season. But on the road, things get a little worse for Milwaukee, as it shoots 42.7% from the floor and 34.1% from three. In the Bucks past four road games, those percentages have fallen to 40.1% and 30.7%, a sign things may not turn around any time soon.
Luckily, Milwaukee owns an incredible 104.0 Defensive Rating on the road, which has helped make up for the lack of offense. The Bucks will likely need to be in top form on that end of the floor if they want to win this matchup.
Even without budding star Desmond Bane in the lineup since November 11th, the Grizzlies have found a way to win basketball games and look positioned to make a run at the NBA title.
The key for Memphis’ success without Bane has been its stellar play on the defensive end of the floor. Bane has missed the past 15 games with a toe injury, but since he went down, Memphis owns a 107.2 Defensive Rating, which ranks third in the NBA in that span. It’s also a massive improvement from the Grizzlies 113.7 Defensive Rating from before Bane got hurt.
The offense hasn’t been anything special from statistical standpoint since the Bane injury, but during Memphis’ six-game win streak the Grizzlies have increased their production.
In their past six games, the Grizzlies are averaging 117.5 points per game and shooting a very efficient 49.2% from the floor. The Grizzlies are also dominating the painted area and leading the NBA in points per game in the paint with 57.3.
That number rises slightly to 58.4 when the Grizzlies play at home, and in their past three games it has risen to 67.3.
The Bucks have been fantastic defensively all season, but Memphis has been equally as impressive lately and I think that gives the Grizzlies the advantage in this one.
During Memphis’ six-game win streak, the Grizzlies have posted a Defensive Rating of 101.6. That ranks first in the NBA since the win streak began, further proving this is one of the more elite groups on the defensive end.
Combine that with the upward trajectory the Grizzlies offense has taken in the past week and Milwaukee’s consistent poor play on the road, and I think we have a recipe for a Grizzlies win. I like the Memphis moneyline in this spot, but I would also take the spread to -3.
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