Kevin Durant is all smiles during a stoppage in play

Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) smiles against the Los Angeles Clippers during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Saturday, Jan. 1, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/Jessie Alcheh)

  • Brooklyn is a 6-point favorite over Memphis on Monday (Jan. 3rd) at 7:40 pm ET at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY
  • Both these teams rank top-10 in possessions per game
  • Read below for odds, analysis and a betting prediction

The Brooklyn Nets will look to end a mini two-game losing streak on Monday (January 3rd) when they host the surging Memphis Grizzlies. Brooklyn was embarrassed on Saturday by an undermanned LA Clippers squad, losing to a team missing most of its key contributors. The result led to Kevin Durant calling for his team to make an attitude adjustment, and to stop expecting to walk into victories.

Memphis on the other hand, enters play fresh off four straight wins, with their latest victory coming over San Antonio on New Year’s eve.

Grizzlies vs Nets Odds

Team Moneyline Spread Total
Memphis Grizzlies +210 +6 (-110) O 227.5 (-110)
Brooklyn Nets -255 -6 (-110) U 227.5 (-110)

Odds as of Jan 3rd at FanDuel.

Despite their recent struggles, the Nets opened up as 6-point home favorites, in a game that features a total of 227.5. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:40 pm ET at Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn, New York, with NBA TV providing the broadcast coverage.

Brooklyn Nets Betting Analysis

Each of Brooklyn’s last two losses have come at home, where they have been surprisingly pedestrian this season. The Nets are just 10-8 at Barclay’s Center so far, and have lost three straight there overall.

Last time out versus the Clips, Brooklyn coughed up a 13-point lead and surrendered 71 second half points. They allowed LA to shoot 48.8% from the field, and 39% from downtown, while forcing just 11 turnovers.

James Harden led the way offensively with a 34 point, 13 assist, 12 rebound effort, while KD splashed 28 points and grabbed 9 boards. The Nets shot just 43% from the field, and 33% from beyond the arc, which is below their season averages. They dominated the rebounding battle by 17, and produced three more assists, but turned the ball over 15 times.

Despite their talented roster, Brooklyn ranks just 11th in points per game this season, after finishing second in that category in 2020-21. Defensively, they’re allowing 107 points per game which is right around league average, but lead the league in opponent effective field goal percentage (49.2%), although you wouldn’t know it after Saturday’s effort.

Injury wise, LaMarcus Aldridge (foot) is questionable, while Joe Harris remains out after ankle surgery. One bright spot for the Nets is the imminent return of Kyrie Irving. The star point guard is expected to make his season debut on Wednesday at Indiana.

Memphis Grizzlies Betting Analysis

The Grizzlies meanwhile, sit comfortably atop the Southwest division after reeling off four consecutive wins, and posting a 7-3 mark in their last 10 contests.

Ja Morant led the way with 30 points, 8 assists and 6 boards versus the Spurs, while Tyus Jones splashed 18 points, and Desmond Bane and Brandon Clarke added 17 points apiece.

Memphis shot 48% from the field, and 39% from three, dominating both the rebound and assist battles. They committed just 10 turnovers, while outscoring San Antonio by 24 in the paint.

The Grizzlies rank seventh in points per game this season, and second in points in the paint. They’ll look to exploit their advantage down low versus Brooklyn, as the Nets rank 20th in points in the paint this season.

Defensively, Memphis is surrendering the 13th most points in the league per game (108.2). and rank 21st in opponent effective field goal percentage.

On the injury front, starting small forward Dillon Brooks is out (health and safety) as are reserves Kyle Anderson, Jarrett Culver, Shaq Buchanan, Yves Pons and De’Anthony Melton for the same reason. Ziaire Williams is also likely to sit with an ankle injury.

Grizzlies vs Nets Pick

Despite Memphis and Brooklyn’s tendency to play games that fall under the total, Monday’s contest is a pace-up spot for both which should lead to a high-scoring affair. Both the Grizzlies and Nets rank top-10 in possessions per game. Given Memphis’ big advantage in the paint, combined with their shaky perimeter defense, this game has potential shootout written all over it.

Three of Brooklyn’s past four games have exceeded 227 points, and I like this contest to do so as well.

Pick: Over 227.5 (-110)

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Chris Amberley

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