After a quick start to the 2020-2021 NBA season, we’ve already seen things from all ends of the spectrum; including the Clippers getting blown out, and the Tom Thibodeau led Knicks getting their first win of the season against an Eastern Conference favorite in the Milwaukee Bucks.
Tonight, we’ve got a rather quiet NBA night with only five games to begin the week. However, this Monday night will have no shortage of great matchups. Beginning at 7:30 with the Grizzlies vs the Nets, the 2020 Rookie of the Year, Ja Morant will face a Nets team without Kyrie Irving or Keving Durant. Morant blew up for a career-high 44 points against the Spurs last Wednesday and looks to continue to his rookie season right where he left off. Look for Morant to have another great game with the lack of talent on the floor from Brooklynn.
We’ve got Trae Young and Jerami Grant highlighting the other 7:30 game in our contest tonight. Young continues to rain in points, averaging 36.5 through two games so far and looks to continue to lead this young Hawks team. A little later at 8:00, Donovan Mitchell and the Jazz will take on Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and the Thunder.
Tonight’s contest will then highlight Houston vs Denver at 9:00, and the Trail Blazers against the Lakers at 10:00 for the late evening slate. James Harden had 44 points in a heartbreaking overtime loss to Portland in their season opener. He’ll be matched up against Denver who took the playoffs by storm last season establishing themselves as a top tier Western Conference team. Led by Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic, (also featured in tonight’s contest), Denver will look to take down a weakened Russell Westbrook-less Houston Rockets squad.
Finally, the night-cap will feature the league’s defending champions, Los Angeles Lakers, hosting the Damien Lillard-led Portland Trail Blazers. Lillard, who while remaining loyal to Portland, will continue to try and prove himself in this highly talented NBA league. He certainly has established himself as a top player, yet, will he be able to bring a championship pedigree to Portland is the question that remains.
In two games so far Lillard has totaled 41 points, 39 against Houston, and only nine against the Jazz. There might not be a bigger stage in basketball than the Staples Center right now, so if there is any game to show up in, this is it.
Year 18 continues for Lebron and his Lakers as they look to maintain their dominance. James, leading the team in points per game so far, has averaged only 20.7 points. It might be safe to expect a more balanced attack from the Lakers this season given Lebron’s age and all the talent they possess.