Day Three Recap
Covering the impact of coronavirus on the sports world
The Western Conference semifinal series between the Memphis Grizzlies and Golden State Warriors is set to tip-off on Sunday afternoon. Both teams advanced after taking care of their respective opponents in the first round. The Warriors bested the Denver Nuggets in five games, while it took the Grizzlies six games to eliminate the upstart Minnesota Timberwolves. Now, they’ll square off against each other for an opportunity to advance to the conference finals. For what it’s worth, Memphis won three out of four regular-season meetings between the two teams.
In addition to two great teams, the series will also include a battle of top-tier point guards in Steph Curry and Ja Morant. In a series that has the potential to be extremely close, both players will be looking to lead their respective squads to a series-opening win on Sunday. With that said, here’s everything you need to know about Game 1 between Memphis and Golden State.
Grizzlies: Statistically, Morant didn’t have his best series against Minnesota. He was held under 20 points in three of the six games, and he shot over 50 percent from the field just once. The Grizzlies were still able to advance past the Timberwolves, which is a testament to their overall depth. However, against a high-powered offense like Golden State’s, the Grizzlies are going to need more from Morant on the offensive end. Look for him to come out aggressive to send a message in Game 1.
Warriors: Health is the key factor heading into the series for the Warriors. They have been consistently dealing with injury issues for basically the past three seasons, but they finally appear to be healthy heading into the second round. When Golden State has Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green all available they’ve been extremely tough to topple, as they’ve demonstrated over the years. As long as those guys can stay out on the floor, Golden State should have a great chance to win Game 1, and the series.
When it comes to deep playoff runs, the Warriors have the experience, and as we mentioned above, they’re finally healthy. After three years, they appear to be extremely hungry to get back to the NBA Finals as a team, so look for them to come out and put the pressure on Memphis early in this series. Pick: Warriors -2
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