Preview: LA Clippers Look to Ride Momemtum into Memphis

HOUSTON, TX - DECEMBER 22: Austin Rivers
HOUSTON, TX - DECEMBER 22: Austin Rivers /

After a thrilling 128-118 victory over the Houston Rockets on Friday evening, the LA Clippers travel to Memphis to take on the struggling Grizzlies.

We’re still trying to recover as well. Last night was arguably the Clippers’ best game of the season. Down multiple starters, four to be exact, LA defeated Houston in thrilling fashion. Austin Rivers scored a career-high. James Harden dropped 50. Jawan Evans for Rookie of the Year?! Ah, too many headlines to get into.

For the Clippers though, it’s time to turn their focus towards the Grizzlies. LA isn’t getting much time to celebrate the win, as they immediately flew to Memphis following last night’s game.

The First Matchup

The Grizzlies are one of the worst teams in the NBA this season. They only have nine wins. However, one of those wins did come against the Clippers. The two teams met up in LA in early November, where the Clips fell 113-104. In that game, the Clippers went 4-26 from beyond the arc (!!!) for an abysmal 15 percent. I’m not certain on what the win probability is if you shoot 15 percent from three, but it can’t be high.

Three Grizzlies scored above 20 points, and their bench contributed 55 points. Compare that to the Clips, who only got 22 from their bench.

What has happened since?

Oh boy. Talk about a turn of events. After that victory, Memphis moved to 6-3, and the Clippers fell to 5-3. Both these teams will matchup today with records under .500. Though, one team is trending upward, and the other is spiraling downward.

Let’s start with Memphis. They have only won THREE games since that November 4th matchup. Three!! And those three wins have come by a combined SIX points. Safe to say they haven’t come easy. The Grizzlies currently sit at 9-23. They’ve won one game in their last nine, and only two in their last 22. Things aren’t looking good right now in Memphis. Oh, they also fired their coach.

On to the Clippers. LA sits at 13-18 on the year, but it’s a very confident 13-18. The Clippers have been without four of their five starters for most of the season. Nobody can seem to get healthy. Somehow, someway, the Clippers are staying afloat. They’re two-and-a-half out of the playoffs, and three-and-a-half out of the fifth seed.

Tonight’s Game

Tonight begins a very important stretch for the Clippers. They will have five consecutive games versus teams currently sitting under .500. If they can manage to string together five straight wins here, they’ll be sitting at 18-18, and primed to make a postseason push.

For the Clippers, Milos Teodosic will be back in the lineup. He missed last night’s game for precautionary reasons.

Injury Report:


Danilo Gallinari – OUT

Wesley Johnson – OUT


Marc Gasol – Day-To-Day

Tonight’s game is at 5 p.m. PT, and can be seen on Prime Ticket.