NBA Preview from The Sports Network|
Saturday, November 17th
(All times eastern)
Memphis Grizzlies (7-1) at Charlotte Bobcats (4-3), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Memphis Grizzlies own the NBA's best winning percentage
and for the first time in franchise history, they have the best record in the
NBA this late in the season.
On Saturday, the Grizzlies will put their seven-game winning streak on the
line against the surprisingly-resurgent Charlotte Bobcats at The Time Warner
The Grizzlies took done the last remaining undefeated team, the New York
Knicks, Friday night, 105-95. Their last three victories came against the
Knicks, the Western Conference champions, the Oklahoma City Thunder, and the
NBA Champions, the Miami Heat.
All three wins were by 10 points or more. They have won 15 straight at home
and with a win on Saturday, the Grizz would match the franchise's all-time
record for consecutive wins with eight.
They are fourth in scoring and sixth in opposition scoring. They have forced
10 or more turnovers in 111 consecutive games, which is not only the longest
active streak in the NBA, it more than twice as long as the Heat's second-
longest active streak.
"We're trying to make a statement that we can play with anybody on a given
night," said point guard Mike Conley. "We have a very deep team and guys play
very hard. We just try to play our grit and grind style of basketball and if
we're good enough to win, we will."
Meanwhile, the Bobcats are only three behind their win total for all of last
season already. Charlotte is in the midst of a three-game winning streak. They
took down the Dallas Mavericks in overtime, crushed the hapless Washington
Wizards and went on the road and beat a good, but depleted, Minnesota
"Where the wins help you is, when you have practices like today, the
confidence, that's where the wins really help," Bobcats coach Mike Dunlap said
after practice on Friday.
Kemba Walker has been spectacular for the Bobcats, highlighted by his pull-up
jumper with less than a second on the clock to defeat the Timberwolves on
Wednesday. Walker is averaging 19.0 ppg and 5.1 assists.
The Bobcats acquired Hakim Warrick in a trade with the New Orleans Hornets
earlier in the week and he's expected to see action on Saturday. Ben Gordon,
who missed the Minnesota game due to personal reasons, is questionable.
Charlotte is coming along, but still has work to do on the defensive side of
the game. They rank 25th in opponent's scoring, despite leading the NBA in
blocks per contest and coming in seventh in steals.
Offensively, the Bobcats have six players averaging double-figures, including
rookie Michael-Kidd Gilchrist.
Charlotte has won six of the last nine times the two teams met, but the
Grizzlies have taken two of the last three, including last season's only
meeting in Charlotte.
11/17 10:57:02 ET