3 Intriguing storylines ahead of big Grizzlies, Trail Blazers battle on ESPN

Ja Morant, Memphis Grizzlies (Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images)
Ja Morant, Memphis Grizzlies (Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images) /
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The Memphis Grizzlies (4-3) travel to Portland tonight to take on the red-hot Trail Blazers (5-1) in a primetime matchup featured on ESPN.

The Grizzlies look to snap their two-game losing streak, as they lost two straight in Utah to one of the more surprising stories of the season in the Jazz.

The Trail Blazers have started this season much better than most anticipated, and they look to continue that success with a win tonight that will keep them in first place in the Western Conference.

The game tips off at 9:00 PM CT, and the Grizzlies open up as 3.5-point favorites on the road.

Let’s take a look at some of the biggest storylines heading into this intriguing contest.

What’s the next chapter in Memphis Grizzlies and Blazers’ rivalry?

Since Ja Morant’s rookie year, the Memphis Grizzlies and Portland Trail Blazers have had some very intense and meaningful matchups.

The most prominent game between these two came in 2020 in the NBA Bubble in what was the NBA’s first-ever play-in game. During that back-and-forth contest, a rookie Ja Morant dropped a then career-high 35 points, but the Grizzlies ultimately came up short to a Damian Lillard/CJ McCollum masterclass in overtime by a score of 122-126.

Since this intense matchup that sent the Grizzlies home, these two teams have always seemed to have a little extra feistiness when matched up against each other.

The Grizzlies are 3-4 against the Blazers the past two seasons, with three of those seven games being within four points of each other.

Expect another close battle tonight, as the Blazers want to keep winning while the Grizzlies want to prove they are legit no matter who is active.