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Portland Trail Blazers vs Memphis Grizzlies: Injury Report, Predicted Lineups and Starting 5s - April 28th, 2021 | NBA Season 2020-21

Memphis Grizzlies vs Portland Trail Blazers
Memphis Grizzlies vs Portland Trail Blazers
Kunal Sethi
ANALYST
Modified 28 Apr 2021
Preview

In their third meeting in the 2020-21 NBA, the Portland Trail Blazers and the Memphis Grizzlies will lock horns at the FedExForum on Wednesday. The Grizzlies won both their two previous meetings.

The Portland Trail Blazers and the Memphis Grizzlies faced off in last season's play-in tournament and are expected to lock horns in this year's play-in as well. The Trail Blazers are 7th in the Western Conference, while the Memphis Grizzlies are eighth.

The Portland Trail Blazers snapped their five-game losing streak against the Indiana Pacers, whom they beat after a three-point shootout. However, they have one of the toughest remaining schedules of any team in the remainder of the season.

Damian Lillard and co. have lost seven of their last nine games, and they are widely expected to fall in the conference standings.

Portland Trail Blazers vs Memphis Grizzlies: Injury Report

Portland Trail Blazers

Portland Trail Blazers
Portland Trail Blazers

The Portland Trail Blazers have a healthy roster after a long time. Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, and Jusuf Nurkic are all back in the lineup.

The only player who remains absent is Zach Collins, who is ruled out due to an ankle injury. Post his ankle surgery, Collins could be back in time for the playoffs.

Memphis Grizzlies

Memphis Grizzlies
Memphis Grizzlies

A key reason for the Memphis Grizzlies' recent success can be attributed to their largely healthy roster, in stark contrast to most of the other teams in the league. They have no names listed in their injury report for this game.

The Grizzlies beat the Trail Blazers in a thriller in their last outing, sweeping them in a two-game mini-series. Given the absence of injuries and their strong recent form, they might win again on Wednesday.

Portland Trail Blazers vs Memphis Grizzlies: Predicted Lineups

Portland Trail Blazers

The Portland Trail Blazers could use the same lineup that took the court on Tuesday, as no new names have been added to their injury report.

Superstar point guard Damian Lillard will look to continue impressing in the backcourt with CJ McCollum. McCollum, who could reprise his two-guard role, is averaging 21.2 points and 4.6 assists since his return, doing so on 43/35/80 shooting splits.

Robert Covington will likely play power forward, and Norman Powell could join him in the frontcourt as the small forward. Jusuf Nurkic should be the starting center, with Enes Kanter coming off the bench.

Memphis Grizzlies

With an entirely healthy roster, the Memphis Grizzlies should deploy their best lineup against the Portland Trail Blazers.

Ja Morant and Jonas Valanciunas have continued to lead the team to victories as the point guard and center, respectively. Dillon Brooks will likely start as the shooting guard.

Kyle Anderson could be the starting small forward instead of power forward, as Jaren Jackson Jr. will return to the power forward position.

The team's second unit off the bench has been excellent as well. De'Anthony Melton, Grayson Allen, Desmond Bane, Justise Winslow and Brandon Clarke should see significant minutes off the bench.

Portland Trail Blazers vs Memphis Grizzlies: Predicted Starting 5s

Portland Trail Blazers

Point Guard - Damian Lillard | Shooting Guard - CJ McCollum | Small Forward - Norman Powell | Power Forward - Robert Covington | Center - Jusuf Nurkic.

Memphis Grizzlies

Point Guard - Ja Morant | Shooting Guard - Dillon Brooks | Small Forward - Kyle Anderson | Power Forward - Jaren Jackson Jr. | Center - Jonas Valanciunas.

Also Read: Top 5 underrated small forwards in the 2020-21 NBA season so far.

Published 28 Apr 2021
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