National Basketball Association
San Antonio at Memphis
When: 8:00 PM ET, Wednesday, January 24, 2018
Where: FedExForum, Memphis, Tennessee
San Antonio Spurs forward LaMarcus Aldridge has been a go-to player this season, and he's headed to the NBA All-Star Game for the sixth time in his career. Aldridge celebrated his latest accolade with a 30-point performance against Cleveland and aims for another strong outing when the Spurs visit the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday.
Aldridge regained the primary scoring role due to small forward Kawhi Leonard being available for just nine games due to his season-long injury issues, and his stellar 12-of-18 shooting performance in Tuesday's 114-102 win over the Cavaliers raised his scoring average to 22.5 points. "L.A. is the reason we've kept a pretty good record and stayed in the hunt with so many injuries," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich told reporters. "He's been a warrior, for sure. We'd be in deep Kimchi if he isn't playing the way he is." The Grizzlies have won four of their last five games after rallying from a 15-point, third-quarter deficit to post a 105-101 win over Philadelphia on Monday. "We're just sharing the basketball," Memphis rookie forward Dillon Brooks told reporters. "It's unselfish play from top to bottom. We're playing defense at a high level."TV:
7 p.m. ET, FS Southwest (San Antonio), FS Southeast (Memphis)ABOUT THE SPURS (31-18):
The saga involving Leonard's quadriceps injury is frustrating to Popovich, who insists there in no rift between the club and the superstar despite an ESPN report claiming there was heavy dissension. "Nobody wants to come back more than Kawhi Leonard," Popovich told reporters. "I think I'm No. 2. His teammates want him back. Everybody wants him back. He's a competitor. He wasn't Kawhi Leonard when he first arrived, the one we know now. So that shows you how much he's put in to get here. He certainly doesn't want to be missing games, so it's frustrating for everybody." Leonard suffered the injury during the preseason, but it has been slow to heal.ABOUT THE GRIZZLIES (17-29):
Brooks has been a key figure in Memphis' improved play as he averaged 17 points over a four-game stretch before scoring only seven against the 76ers as he struggled with an illness. His rise has been impressive in that he was just a second-round pick (45th overall) in last June's draft, but his pesky style and ability to annoy opponents has impressed interim coach J.B. Bickerstaff. "We've seen it time and time again this year," Bickerstaff told reporters. "Even in the preseason, whenever there was a matchup to be had, Dillon would find his way to that matchup. He's competitive, he's dogged in his defensive ways and he's just not going to back down."BUZZER BEATERS
1. The Spurs are 2-0 against the Grizzlies this season and have won the last four meetings.
2. San Antonio C Pau Gasol (wrist) could miss his second straight game.
3. Memphis G Mario Chalmers scored 17 points against Philadelphia, his top effort since recording a season-best 21 versus Portland on Nov. 20.PREDICTION:
Spurs 99, Grizzlies 92
Stats and Records