Grizzlies vs Warriors NBA Odds, Picks and Predictions May 21

Updated: May 20, 2021

The No. 8 Golden State Warriors can’t dwell on the devastating gut punch suffered in Round 1 of the NBA play-in tournament, not with the No. 9 Memphis Grizzlies coming to town for Friday’s do-or-die matchup.

Golden State, which is a 3.5-point NBA betting favorite for this eliminator that will determine the No. 8 seed in the NBA Playoffs, blew a 13-point lead over the L.A. Lakers in the second half Wednesday and fell into this Round 2 meeting with Memphis, which knocked off No. 10 San Antonio in its play-in opener.

Here are our free NBA picks and predictions for Grizzlies vs. Warriors on May 21.

Grizzlies vs Warriors game info

Location: Chase Center, San Francisco, CA
Date: Friday, May 21, 2021
Time: 9:00 p.m. ET

Grizzlies vs Warriors odds

Odds via the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.

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Golden State opened as a 3.5-point home favorite while the total hit the board as high as 226.5 points but has quickly dropped to 222. Check back later for a full report from Patrick!

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Grizzlies at Warriors betting preview


Grizzlies: No injuries to report.
Warriors: James Wiseman C (Out), Kelly Oubre F (Out), Damion Lee G (Questionable).
Find our latest NBA injury reports.

Betting trend to know

The Grizzlies and Warriors have played Under the total in 20 of their last 27 head-to-head meetings. Find more NBA betting trends for Spurs/Grizzlies vs. Lakers/Warriors.

Against the spread (ATS) pick

The Grizzlies and Warriors have oven-fresh game film to fork through after facing each other in the season finale. That 113-101 Golden State win on Sunday held weight, with the Warriors securing the No. 8 seed thanks to the victory and covering as 3-point chalk. 

Instantly, we go back to last weekend’s meeting for guidance in navigating the odds for this play-in game. And in that contest, the Warriors’ stingy defense did a great job on everyone but Jonas Valanciunas, who finished 12 for 15 from the field with 29 points and 16 rebounds. But take him out of the mix, and the rest of Memphis shot a dismal 36 percent and scored a mere 72 points.  

We saw a similar trend versus San Antonio. Valanciunas scored 23 points on 10-of-16 shooting and the rest of the Grizzlies combined to go 30 for 74 (40.5%) from the field, including a rotten 7 for 21 from deep. Ignore a freakish first quarter from the Grizzlies, in which they built a 38-19 lead (which blew up in their face), and everyone but Jonas shot a gag-inducing 20 for 56 in the final 36 minutes versus the Spurs (35.7%).

The Warriors’ inconsistent offense may be to blame for Wednesday’s collapse in Los Angeles, unable to land a KO punch on the Lakers, but the Dubs have less to worry about against Memphis. Not only are the Grizzlies less dangerous on offense but they definitely aren’t L.A. in terms of defensive chops, ranking 17th in the league’s advanced defensive rating since April 1 – a significant drop-off from their rating of 109.3 which ranked seventh-best through the first four months of the sked. 

Golden State was far from perfect when it beat Memphis last Sunday, and that’s being kind. Outside of Steph Curry going crazy (46 points on 36 shots), the rest of the Warriors shot 6 for 17 from distance and the team committed 19 turnovers which led to 23 easy points from the Grizzlies.

Most teams would be in danger of a letdown after losing the way the Warriors did to triple-vision LeBron and the Lakers Wednesday. But this is a veteran squad, anchored by Curry, Draymond Green and coach Steve Kerr. The Dubs can book those tickets to Utah early and you can lay the points. 

PREDICTION: Golden State -3.5 (-110)

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Over/Under pick

It’s tough to get a grasp on how well the Warriors played defensively Wednesday night. They checked Los Angeles to 42 first-half points, but some of that was just struggles from the Lakers’ stars, who constantly missed wide-open look in the first 24 minutes.

Regardless, there’s no denying how strong Golden State has been on the defensive side of the ball in the home stretch of the schedule. The Warriors topped the NBA in advanced defensive rating during their final 20 games of the regular season, giving up only 109 points on 44.2 percent shooting in that span. 

Green continues to be the rock of this defense and got help with a strong effort from Andrew Wiggins on Wednesday. They did a solid job hedging and showing to slow down L.A.’s pick-and-roll attempts, with Green disrupting plenty of passes to the screener. The Warriors also defend in transition better than most, allowing only 1.07 points per play and a scoring frequency of 48.9 percent versus transition attacks.

Memphis has capable on-the-ball options as well, with Dillon Brooks drawing the assignment of pestering Curry. The Grizzlies got roasted by the all-time great once Brooks fouled out of Sunday’s contest, with Curry scoring 11 points to fuel a 21-10 run in the final six minutes with Brooks on the bench.

These teams stayed below the 228-point total last weekend and have gone an incredible 7-20 Over/Under in their last 27 meetings overall.

PREDICTION: Under 223 (-110)

Player prop pick

Stay tuned for an additional prop pick when markets are live! 

Grizzlies vs Warriors betting card

  • Golden State -3.5 (-110)
  • Under 223 (-110)

Picks made on 5/20/2021 at 11:20 a.m. ET

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