The Memphis Grizzlies will aim to continue their torrid play at home on Wednesday night when they host the Portland Trail Blazers.
The Grizzlies recorded their eighth straight win at FedEx Forum and 21st in 24 outings at home with a 112-100 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Sunday.
Ja Morant recorded his fifth triple-double of the season and second in a row to lift Memphis, which overcame a 19-point deficit to snap a season-high five-game losing streak.
Morant collected 27 points, 15 assists and 10 rebounds on Sunday. He had 20, seven and nine, respectively, in the Grizzlies’ 111-106 victory over the Trail Blazers on Nov. 2.
Jaren Jackson Jr. also continued his dominant play at home on Sunday, contributing 28 points, eight rebounds and five blocks. His totals for blocks and steals at FedExForum led one random Reddit user to conclude that the Defensive Player of the Year candidate is having his numbers inflated by Memphis’ home-court scorekeeper.
“Foolish. The NBA made a statement. Conspiracy, conspiracy,” Grizzlies coach Taylor Jenkins said. “JJ is one of the best defensive players in the game. So glad to have him on our team.”
For what it’s worth, Jackson has stepped up his play at home. He has totaled 71 blocks and 23 steals in 17 games at home, as opposed to 37 and 12, respectively, in 17 games on the road.
Jackson, however, didn’t put much stock into the conspiracy theory.
“I thought it was pretty funny,” Jackson said following Sunday’s win. “I didn’t really understand it at first. I saw that I beat the case.”
Memphis will receive an added assist with the expected return of Danny Green.
Green, 35, is in line to make his season debut on Wednesday, approximately eight months removed from tearing the anterior and lateral cruciate ligaments in his left knee while playing for the Philadelphia 76ers in the Eastern Conference semifinals. The three-time NBA champion was traded with David Roddy to Memphis in the offseason for De’Anthony Melton.
The Trail Blazers head into the opener of their three-game road trip having won three of their past four games, with Damian Lillard averaging 42.3 points during that stretch. He highlighted his 42-point performance in Portland’s 129-125 win over the Atlanta Hawks on Monday by making all 17 of his free-throw attempts.
“We needed to win one like that, especially finishing out this homestand and getting ready for another road trip,” Lillard said, per The Oregonian.
Anfernee Simons, who matched Lillard with five 3-pointers, converted from beyond the arc with 34.1 seconds left in the fourth quarter to give the Trail Blazers a lead they would not relinquish.
“I wasn’t really expecting the ball but I was prepared for it,” Simons said. “Usually, they don’t help off me like that. (DeAndre Hunter) helped way off and I got pretty much an easy 3 to get off. It was as easy as it comes.”
Simons scored a team-high 31 points in the previous encounter with Memphis.