With game one of the San Antonio Spurs-Memphis Grizzlies first round series just a day away, I talked to several local media and NBA bloggers to get their thoughts on the series and their predictions.
Richard Oliver, San Antonio Express-News and Fox Sports Southwest
The Spurs are built this season for 7-game playoff series. But against a gritty Grizzlies team, look for it to go only six. Spurs advance.
Humberto Cervera, News4WOAI
The Spurs seem genuinely upset that the Grizzlies tanked their last two games to get them in the first round. Combine that with the sneaky feeling I get that Manu is going to play in all their games, the lack of playoff experience from the Grizzlies and their coach and I’m saying the Spurs will sweep this series. Spurs 4 – Grizz 0.
Tim Griffin, San Antonio Express-News
This was going to be a test for the Spurs even before Manu Ginobili got hurt. The Spurs will have trouble with Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph and they are strong in some areas that are weak. They’ve pummeled them all season long, Mike Conley has improved, but he’s no match for Tony Parker. And Parker will impose his will in getting to the rim and getting other players involved. Look for the Spurs’ deeper bench to be the difference.
Spurs in 6. And the order I pick is San Antonio, Memphis, San Antonio, Memphis, San Antonio, San Antonio.
Daniel Artest, professional basketball player and die-hard Spurs fan
The Grizzlies have been rolling as of late. I’m surprised they made the playoffs without Rudy Gay. Big Z-Bo will be a load in the low block. We can only contain him. Beating Memphis will take a team effort. I’m a little worried about Manu’s elbow injury, I hope it’s not that bad. We’re a veteran team so we’ll have guys that’ll step up. Our bench has been, for the most part, consistent throughout the season. We have three point threats in Bonner and Neal, a great slasher and defender in Hill. I believe this series will be tough but we’ll win in six games. Duncan is primed and ready after playing limited minutes during the regular season. Jefferson has figured the offense out after struggling last year. He’s better than I expected. As long as nagging injuries leave us alone, we should be fine in this postseason.
Rey Moralde, The No Look Pass
The Grizzlies look intriguing but, let’s face it, they can’t beat the Spurs four out of seven times. The Spurs, with that mix of playoff experience and youth, should be able to handle the Grizzlies quite easily… especially with Tony Parker having a field day against Mike Conley on the offensive end of things. At the very least, I’ll be happy for the Grizzlies if they win a game in this series, which I think they will. But I don’t see them winning more than two games in this match-up at the maximum. I’ll say Spurs in five, though.
Our friends, J.E. Skeets and Tas Melas sent us their series prediction via their Basketball Jones preview show.
OK Spurs fans. Time to get your predictions in. Who do you have winning this series?