Where's The Defense?

The Memphis Grizzlies are struggling on defense, but they're hoping a game against the Minnesota Timberwolves will help.

The Grizzlies will be trying to take advantage of a battered Timberwolves' lineup when the teams meet on Saturday.

Oddsmakers from Bodog have made Memphis -9 point spread favorites (NBA Odds) for today’s game, the over/under has been set at 213 total points (Matchup). Our public betting information shows that 51% of bets for this game have been placed on Memphis -9 (View NBA Bet Percentages).

Memphis (5-10) relies on a high-powered offense that is averaging 104.2 points per game. However, defense has been the team's undoing, as the Grizzlies are allowing opponents to shoot 47.8 percent - the worst mark in the NBA.

Memphis has allowed its opponents to score in triple digits in all but three of its 15 games and is coming off Wednesday's 103-91 defeat in Toronto. The Grizzlies have allowed at least 100 points in each of their last four games.

"The whole key is good defense, and we didn't do that very well," Mike Miller said. "They did a good job pushing the tempo."

The Grizzlies, however will be up against a Minnesota team that is averaging just 93.9 points per game and has reached triple digits in just four of its 14 contests.

Memphis has won eight of its last 10 against Minnesota, including five of six at home. The Grizzlies averaged more than 110 points in winning two of three last season.

Minnesota has been hampered by a banged-up backcourt. Randy Foye has been out all season while recovering from a stress reaction in his left kneecap and might be sidelined for another month. Marko Jaric, who has been his replacement, sprained his right foot and left after the first quarter of Friday's 106-91 loss to San Antonio.

Rashad McCants, who ranks second on the team with 14.4 points per game, was a surprise scratch from the game because of a sore right knee. Coach Randy Wittman said McCants showed up before the game and was hurting.

Wittman added that Jaric's injury is "probably not good."

Al Jefferson, who leads the team with 20.9 points and 11.2 rebounds, had 23 points and 11 boards on Friday. Jefferson was coming off a season-best 31-point performance in Wednesday's 109-103 loss in Dallas.

However, the Timberwolves (2-12) allowed the Spurs to finish Friday's game on a 40-11 run.

"It stings. It hurts. It hurts, because we put so much into preparing for the game and going out there and doing all the right things and just not finishing it off," said Sebastian Telfair, who started at point guard and had 17 points.

The Grizzlies will be trying to bounce back from their first loss in three games. Juan Carlos Navarro scored 15 points and Pau Gasol added 13 on Wednesday for Memphis, which had won back-to-back games for the first time this season.

"We wanted to get that momentum going and put a nice winning streak together," Gasol said. "You come here and don't play at the level you are supposed to, it is frustrating.

"We have two home games coming up, and we are expecting to play well and come up with a win."

The Grizzlies are just 3-4 at home this season.

By: Marc Young - theSpread.com - Email Us

More NBA Basketball Coverage from theSpread.com

 - NBA Basketball teams
 - NBA Basketball standings
 - NBA Basketball schedule
 - NBA Basketball scoreboard
 - NBA Basketball injuries
 - NBA Basketball matchups
 - NBA Basketball stats
 - NBA Basketball odds
 - NBA Basketball public betting chart
 - NBA Basketball news wire
 - NBA Basketball top stories
 - NBA Basketball trends
 - AccuScore NBA Basketball predictions
 - Expert NBA Basketball picks
 - Comments and discussion
 - Signup for theSpread.com daily newsletter
 - NBA Basketball Home

NBA Headlines

  • LOS ANGELES (AP) Los Angeles Clippers guard Patrick Beverley is expected to miss the rest of the season after arthroscopic surgery on his right knee.
    The Clippers said Beverley had surgery We...
  • DENVER (AP) The Denver Nuggets say they're exploring options to repair All-Star Paul Millsap's torn ligament in his left wrist amid concerns he'll need surgery that will sideline him until late Fe...
  • MILWAUKEE (AP) Injuries are thinning the Milwaukee Bucks' frontcourt as they begin a Western Conference road trip.
    The team says forward Mirza Teletovic is expected to miss four weeks followi...
  • METAIRIE, La. (AP) New Orleans center DeMarcus Cousins says he was protecting a rebound the way all big men are taught when he was ejected for a flagrant foul during a game against Oklahoma City.<...
  • ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) Retired NBA star Ray Allen believes he is a victim of ''catfishing,'' and has asked a court to throw out a case where he is accused of stalking someone he met online.
    Allen...

NBA Top Stories

Thumbnail Lakers vs. Kings Pick Are the Los Angeles Lakers going to win for a second straight night when they play at the Sacramento Kings tonight at...
Thumbnail Spurs vs. Pelicans Pick Are the San Antonio Spurs going to notch a win at the the host New Orleans Pelicans...
Thumbnail Warriors vs. Thunder Pick Are the Golden State Warriors going to waltz into the home arena of the Oklahoma City Thunder tonight and pick up a win against the spread? Game time is 8PM...
Thumbnail Raptors vs. Knicks Pick Are the visiting Toronto Raptors going to cover the spread tonight at 7:30PM ET when they play at the New York...

NBA Team Pages