Brooklyn Nets: 3 things to watch against slumping Grizzlies

Brooklyn Nets D'Angelo Russell (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
Brooklyn Nets D'Angelo Russell (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /
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Brooklyn Nets
Brooklyn Nets D’Angelo Russell (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images) /

3. Left-handers take the point

Friday night’s matchup between the Brooklyn Nets and Memphis Grizzlies brings together two of the NBA’s few left-handed point guards in Mike Conley of the Grizzlies and D’Angelo Russell of the Nets.

This will be the first time the two have been since Russell came to Brooklyn in June 2017. Neither player was healthy for the teams’ Nov. 26, 2017, meeting in Memphis and Conley also missed the March 19 return date in Brooklyn.

This will be the sixth meeting between the lefties with the Ohio State roots — Conley played for the Buckeyes in 2006-07 and Russell in 2014-15. All of those games were when Russell was with the Los Angeles Lakers.

The battle head-to-head has been surprisingly close. Conley has averaged 20.2 points, 3.0 rebounds, 7.2 assists and 1.4 assists in 30.1 minutes per game while shooting .529/.400/1.000 in those five meetings.

Russell has put up 20.0 points, 3.4 rebounds and 5.0 assists in 31.2 minutes a night, shooting .508/.516/.800.

The Grizzlies won three of the five games.

Russell has been wildly inconsistent this season, particularly of late, as he has scored five, 38 and 14 points in his last three games, respectively, with 2-for-10, 16-for-28 and 6-for-25 shooting marks.

On the season, he’s averaging 17.6 points, 4.0 rebounds, 5.6 assists and 1.2 steals in 28.4 minutes per game on a slash line of .410/.364/.765.

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The other lefties at the point in the NBA include Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia 76ers, Goran Dragic of the Miami Heat and De’Aaron Fox of the Sacramento Kings, as well as injured Isaiah Thomas of the Denver Nuggets.