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Warriors vs. Grizzlies Game Preview: Warriors go for two in a row

Mike Conley and Marc Gasol have always posed challenges for the Warriors, but Golden State’s superior talent should win the day.

Memphis Grizzlies v Golden State Warriors Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

How to watch:

Date: Saturday, October 21

Time: 5:00 PDT

Location: FedExForum, Memphis

TV: NBCBA, NBA TV

Radio: 95.7 The Game

Team records:

Warriors: 1-1

Grizzlies: 1-0

Warriors: PG Stephen Curry , SG Klay Thompson , SF Kevin Durant , PF Draymond Green, C Zaza Pachulia

Grizzlies: PG Mike Conley, SG Andrew Harrison, SF James Ennis III, PF Jarell Martin, C Marc Gasol

INJURY & ROSTER NOTES

GSW: Omri Casspi (left ankle sprain) is out.

MEM: Ben McLemore (foot fracture), Wayne Selden Jr. (sore quad) and JaMychal Green (sprained ankle) are out.

Tyreke Evans (sore ankle) is probable.

Opportunity knocks

In past years, the Memphis Grizzlies were a tricky matchup for the Warriors. Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol in the paint, Tony Allen and Tayshaun Prince guarding wings, and Mike Conley running an organized, almost exclusively half-court attack. Of the impressive lot, only Conley and Gasol have remained in Memphis. But their running mates are a random assortment of youth and veterans.

The Warriors need to blow them out. A combination of Andrew Harrison, Chandler Parsons, James Ennis III, Tyreke Evans, and Dillon Brooks will be asked to guard Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant, Draymond Green, Nick Young, and others. Even if Conley plays a tough game on Curry, and if Gasol is able to score inside, the wing matchup should overwhelm Memphis.

Defending Gasol

Steve Kerr has the depth to deploy a variety of options in stopping Gasol because Memphis lacks other inside options. Javale McGee, Draymond Green, Kevin Durant, Jordan Bell and Zaza Pachulia each bring different skills on defense. To keep Gasol on his toes, watch for the Warriors’ front-court combinations and take note of which ones work.

Memphis rookies

The Grizzlies lost JaMychal Green to injury on Wednesday and he is out. Perhaps Ivan Rabb, a product of Oakland’s Bishop O’Dowd High School, and University of California-Berkeley, will get some run. Rabb will need time, maybe years, to adjust to the NBA, but has potential to be a solid defensive player. He did not play in Memphis’ first game, but might see the floor with Green out.

Memphis’ Dillon Brooks, who balled with Jordan Bell and Chris Boucher at Oregon, scored 19 points in his Grizzlies debut. Look for Draymond Green and Klay Thompson to defend him hard tonight. There will be not shortage of trash talk between Brooks and Green (both like to jaw). Brooks could be trouble if he finds his stroke early.

Get over .500

Kevin Durant’s Block Party in NOLA last night launched the Warriors into the win column, but the Dubs looked sluggish at the start of the Pelicans game. That’s okay— but dictating the pace and playing in transition is crucial early in Memphis. Watch for Thompson to have another big game. I can feel it. I just don’t know who can effectively defend him. Even Chandler Parsons.