The NBA playoffs continue tonight. Here is a parlay for your pleasure. Top sportsbooks have released their betting odds for tonight’s NBA playoff action.
One game, in particular, interests me as worth investing in Golden State vs. Memphis. For reasons that I will explain, you should play both spread and total for this game.
Feel free to parlay both bets at online sports betting site in order to maximize your profit.
Golden State Warriors vs. Memphis Grizzlies
Wednesday, May 11, 2022 – 09:30 PM EDT at FedExForum
Do Odds Changes Due Ja Morant's Injury?
In Games 1 and 2 of this series, both of which took place in Memphis, the Grizzlies opened as two-point underdogs.
For this game, they opened as a 3.5-point underdog. As of this article, the NBA odds have them as four-point underdogs.
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The reason why they are dogged by more points is that star point guard Ja Morant has been ruled out for this game with a knee injury.
According to public perception, Morant's absence is a huge deal because he is the team's star point guard, its most prolific player, and the face of the team.
This shift in odds reflects the common perception of Morant's importance to his team.
The points that oddsmakers are giving Memphis backers should be construed as generous and free points because the perception that Morant's absence deals a huge blow to his team has no basis in reality.
During the regular season, the Grizzlies were 20-5 in games where he did not play.
Despite the fact that Morant is known for his offense -- his dribble-drive and slashing to the basket, his prowess in transition, etc. -- the Grizzlies produced over 117 points per contest in those 25 games without Morant.
They were efficient on offense, as evident in their overall and three-point field goal percentages.
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To make the comparison in another way, Morant played in just about every game from December 20 to March 18.
During that span, the Grizzlies' offensive rating was 115.5. However, from March 19 to April 8, during which span Morant did not play a single game, the Grizzlies' offensive rating improved to 117.9.
If we like Memphis' offense more without Morant, as the statistics tell us to do so objectively, then we have to prefer the team overall without him because Morant is a weak point on Memphis' defense.
Who Are Morant's Backup?
His backup, Tyus Jones, had a better defensive rating this season than Morant did by about six points.
In addition to being effective on offense -- during the regular season, Jones produced a 113 offensive rating, which was not far behind Morant's -- Jones is clearly the superior defender.
Jones brought efficiency inside the arc and outside the arc where he shot with the best efficiency of his career.
Additionally, De'Anthony Melton stepped up with strong point totals when Morant wasn't playing.
Melton is a versatile scorer, but where he stepped up most was arguably from behind the arc.
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So far this series, he's been underperforming in his wide-open three-point efficiency. Morant's absence creates a great opportunity for him to start making shots.
Such increases in scoring efficiency from other players in a situation where their star teammate gets injured are typical when the 'rally angle' is in play.
I like Memphis tonight because of the 'rally angle.' The odds suggest that the Grizzlies will be worse without Morant, but other players will step up and actually make Memphis better.
NBA Pick: Grizzlies +4 (-110) with BetOnline
NBA Pick: Over 218.5 (-110) with BetOnline
While Grizzly scorers generally will improve in Morant's absence, I imagine that the Warriors will do the same.
Golden State has had one of the NBA's top offenses in this playoffs. The Warriors had scored 117 in Game 1 and 142 in Game 3,
They only scored 101 points in Game 4 largely because they performed obscenely from behind the arc, converting their open and wide-open attempts at bizarrely low rates.
With the weaponry that they boast in the form of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and Jordan Poole, they will re-up their scoring total tonight.
For the above reasons, expect a high-scoring game where the Grizzlies have favored Golden State on upset alert.
Therefore, parlay the Grizzlies' ATS with the "over." Be sure to use our trusty parlay calculator for your parlay betting needs.
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.