Start time: 7:00 PM ET
Probable starting lineups
Toronto: Jose Calderon, DeMar DeRozan, James Johnson, Amir Johnson, Aaron Gray
Memphis: Mike Conley, Tony Allen, Rudy Gay, Marreese Speights, Marc Gasol
Toronto: Linas Kleiza and Andrea Bargnani are both day-to-day
Memphis: Darrell Arthur is out for the sesaon and Zach Randolph is expected to be out until mid-March
I’m under some tight time restraints so this will be a quick one…
Despite the fact that their best player, Zach Randolph, has missed 35 of their 39 games, the Grizzlies sit in seventh place in the West and just beat the defending champion Mavericks by double figures on Wednesday. They’re succeeding with a top-10 Defensive Ranking and a career season from Marc Gasol, who is averaging 15 points, 10 rebounds and three assists going into this game.
Where they haven’t been quite so successful this season is in road games, where they have a 6-10 record going into tonight. This could mean that it’s a winnable game for the Raptors, but it’s hard to maintain confidence in that when you look at the talent disparity between the two teams.
DeMar DeRozan is averaging 22.8 points over his last five games, but I’ll be very surprised if he matches that figure tonight with Tony Allen guarding him. This has the potential to be one of those games where the Raptors have long painful stretches with a field goal.
Apropos of nothing, here’s the “Dwight Howard Cookie Challenge”, courtesy of @jose3030.