Who: Memphis Grizzlies at Sacramento Kings
When: 9:00 pm CST
Where: Power Balance Pavilion, Sacramento, CA
Records: Memphis Grizzlies (25-18), Sacramento Kings (16-29)
Expected Starting Lineups:
Memphis – Mike Conley, Tony Allen, Rudy Gay, Zach Randolph, Marc Gasol
Sacramento - Isiah Thomas, Marcus Thornton, John Salmons, Jason Thompson, DeMarcus Cousins
Memphis rebounded from two disappointing losses to hold off the Washington Wizards Sunday night to finish a disappointing home stand 1-2. The one bright spot was the return of Zach Randolph to the team. Z-Bo showed he hadn’t lost a lot while recovering from his partially torn MCL averaging 19 ppg and 9 rebounds in just 24.5 mpg.
Rudy Gay has not lost himself with Randolph’s return either going for a season high 27 points against Washington including 5 points in the final minute to put away any hope of a Wizard comeback. Marc Gasol has also maintained his importance with Z-Bo’s return and the Grizzlies front-line, considered a major strength at the beginning of the season, now is even more formidable with Marreese Speights coming off the bench behind Gasol and Randolph.
The backcourt has struggled somewhat since Randolph’s return but seems to be finding their stride. Mike Conley had a nice game forcing John Wall into 7 turnovers and the shooting guard combination of Tony Allen and O J Mayo are still effective.
Sacramento has won their last two games in impressive fashion over the Celtics and Minnesota despite not having former Memphis Tiger Tyreke Evans available. Despite a 16-29 record overall Sacramento is 12-9 at home and near the end of an incredible 9 game home stand. The last time the Kings played on the road was March 5th.
Tyreke Evans is questionable for this game but the Kings are content going to battle without him. Isiah Thomas won the Western Conference Rookie of the Month award and is playing very well right now. DeMarcus Cousins has apparently grown up and is leading the league in offensive rebounds, charges taken and 4th in total rebounds.
Prediction: The Grizzlies struggle in Sacramento and the Kings are playing their best ball right now. Kings win.