Cavs (21-40) vs. Grizzlies (40-19) – Game #62


The Cavs are expected to have all their starters back, with Dion Waiters (stomach virus) returning after a two-game absence. But it’s the reserves who will be fired up for this one — as Marreese Speights and Wayne Ellington came to Cleveland from Memphis in a late-January trade. Clearly, those two have helped make the Cavs more relevant. At the same time, the Grizzlies have hardly skipped a beat. They’ve won 10 of 11, with the lone loss coming at Miami.

Venue: Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland.

TV/Radio: 7 p.m. EST, FOX Sports Ohio/WTAM

All-Time Series: Cavs lead, 21-11.


C Marc Gasol
PF Ed Davis
SF Tayshaun Prince
SG Tony Allen
PG Mike Conley

C Tyler Zeller
PF Tristan Thompson
SF Alonzo Gee
SG Dion Waiters
PG Kyrie Irving

Pregame notes:

• Waiters will go head-to-head with perhaps the league’s most underrated backcourt defender in Allen. Welcome back, Dion.

• In fact, all of the Grizzlies do it with defense. They lead the NBA in points allowed — surrendering a measly 89.4 points per game.

• Grizzlies starting power forward Zach Randolph, the team’s lone All-Star representative, missed the previous two games with a sprained ankle. He’s questionable for Friday.

• The Grizzlies are 11-3 since trading Rudy Gay to Toronto. They received Prince and forward Austin Daye (Detroit), and Davis (Toronto), in the deal.

• The Cavs have a tendency to surrender big leads (Phoenix, New York), and the Grizzlies have a tendency to overcome them. They came back to beat Dallas after trailing by 25 on Feb. 27, then came from 17 down to win their next home game vs. Portland.

• Memphis is 10-1 when shooting at least 50 percent from the field, and 29-2 when shooting a better field-goal percentage than its opponent.

• Five of the Grizzlies’ 13 players are left-handed — Conley, Davis, Prince, Randolph and rookie Tony Wroten.