grizzlies warriors odds pick prediction
May 16, 2021; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) shoots the basketball against Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant (12) during the third quarter at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

After the Washington Wizards dismantled the Indiana Pacers last night to earn the East’s No. 8 seed, the country will bear witness to the final play-in game of the postseason tournament tonight as the Golden State Warriors host to the Memphis Grizzlies. The Western Conference’s No. 8 seed and a trip to Utah await the winner in this win-or-go-home matchup.

Let’s take a closer look at the best wagering markets with our Grizzlies vs. Warriors betting pick, complete with the best odds, prop predictions, and analysis.

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The Warriors, despite finishing the regular season as the West’s eighth-best team, boast the league’s seventh-best home record at 25-11. They are 4.5-5 point favorites at most sportsbooks at the time of publish and face a Grizzlies group that was a tremendous 22-14 ATS on the road this season.

Something has to give in this high stakes affair and we will try to make sense of it all for you as we break down a couple betting options with good value in tonight’s game.

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Grizzlies vs. Warriors Odds

Here are the current odds for Grizzlies and Warriors at DraftKings Sportsbook:

Clippers-3 (-112)-143O 216.5 (-112)
Mavericks+3 (-109)+123U 216.5 (-109)

Grizzlies vs. Warriors Betting Pick

Memphis Grizzlies +7.5 AND Under 224.5 (FanDuel Sportsbook +165)

This play gives us the best of all worlds. We push the line up in a game that has huge implications and could go down to the wire. We push the total up for two underrated defensive teams who both showed their worth on that end of the court in their respective first games of the play-in tournament.

And, as a bonus, we get better than 3-2 odds for our troubles.

Memphis was a tremendous cover team all season long at 42-30 ATS and that was heightened on the road where they were 22-14 ATS. They staved off San Antonio Wednesday night, one of the best road cover teams in history this season. And they held the Spurs to just 96 points, which was their fourth-lowest points total on the road all season.

Underrated Defense

There is much said about defense being paramount in NBA Playoff games, as evidenced by the Lakers’ run last summer. The Grizzlies are an underrated defense, much like the Warriors, and should continue to guard the ball well again tonight. They were just 16th in scoring defense (112.6 points per game against), but that number is skewed a bit because they play at the eighth-fastest pace in the league. Memphis was the league’s 11th best field goal percentage defense this season (46.2%) and ranked sixth in defensive efficiency (108.5), just a spot behind its opponent tonight.

Yes, Golden State is a top five team in terms of defensive efficiency and the Warriors showed it the other night against the Lakers, despite suffering the loss. Their 3rd-ranked field goal percentage defense (45.2%) and eighth-ranked 3-point field goal percentage defense (35.9%) should be able to slow down a Grizzlies team which ranked just 18th and 20th, respectively, in those two areas.

We also think the Steph Curry versus Ja Morant dynamic could lend to a lower-scoring game, as well as a tight one. The two could expend extra energy on the defensive end chasing the other around. Knowing each carries the fate of his team squarely on his shoulders could mean two heroic performances that see the two teams trade blows throughout in a game that may come down to the final possession.

This prop gives us a generous boost on Memphis’ spread. Both of these teams’ first play-in games were decided by less than this line, as were eight of the teams’ final combined 16 games, including four of the Warriors’ last five. When Memphis was an underdog of four or less or were favored on the road this season, they only lost five of 26 games by more than the spread this prop offers.

We mentioned that the Warriors had one of the best home records in the league, yet, even still, they won less than half of their games on this court by more than what they are laying in this prop.

With these two having played six straight head-to-head meetings to less than this prop’s total points, and with the two having played a game of similar implications on this court just five days ago, we truly believe this one should stay low enough and close enough to cash this prop pick.

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Grizzlies vs. Warriors Betting Prediction

We have already touched on a lot of the foundation as to why we think tonight should be a low-scoring game, relative to the league norm which has seen games produce an average of over 224 total points this season. The game features two top six teams in terms of defensive efficiency that just played a game with huge ramifications on this court within the last week. That one had a playoff vibe and only produced 214 total points.

All three meetings featuring these teams this season produced less than 220 total points, which speaks to the underrated nature of each defense, as well as the toll Curry and Morant can exact upon each other. In fact, if you look back over the last couple seasons, you find that these two teams have played eight of the last 10 head-to-head to less than tonight’s posted total. Going back further, you find that 20 of the last 27 meetings between these two teams have stayed under their posted numbers (74.1%).

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Golden State has played under the total in five of their eight games this season (62.5%) as a favorite of 3-4.5 points. They have also played 19 of their 33 games under (57.6%) after a loss and 25 of 41 games under (61.0%) against opponents off a win. These two teams have combined to play 34 of 59 games under (57.6%) against above .500 opponents, as well, including five of the last seven for Memphis (71.4%) and 19 of the last 26 for the Warriors (73.1%).

Memphis has played four straight under on one day of rest and six of their last seven games overall. Look for them to hang in there tonight and make it five straight under games when these two meet in Oakland.

OUR PICK: Grizzlies vs. Warriors Betting Pick: Mem/GSW Under 222 (FanDuel Sportsbook -112)

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Bob Wankel is a credentialed Phillies writer for Crossing Broad. He is also Vice President of Sports Betting Content at XL Media and co-hosts Crossed Up: A Phillies Podcast. A South Jersey resident and graduate of Monmouth University, his past work includes 12+ years in education and six seasons as a freelancer at NFL Films. On Twitter: @Bob_Wankel E-mail: