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Raptors Look to Add to Slumping Grizzlies' Woes: Preview, TV info and more

The Toronto Raptors travel to Memphis on Friday to square off against the slumping, battered Grizzlies.

Patrick Patterson, right, takes the ball to the hoop against Chris Andersen
Patrick Patterson, right, takes the ball to the hoop against Chris Andersen
Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

After earning their franchise-record 50th victory of the season on Wednesday against the Atlanta Hawks, the Toronto Raptors are back on the road for a date with the Memphis Grizzlies on Friday.

Memphis is a shell of itself these days as injuries have decimated the roster, but is still firmly in the Western Conference playoff picture despite four straight losses.

Zach Randolph is back but the Grizzlies are still missing Marc Gasol and Mike Conley among others. The Raptors will look to pounce on this wounded animal tonight. Here are some storylines to watch for:

Lowry's Elbow

As will probably be the case for the rest of the regular season, the biggest concern surrounding this Raptors team is Kyle Lowry's health. The all-star guard has clearly not been himself lately, shooting an atrocious 20-for-80 from the field over his past five games. His free-throw shooting has suffered as well. Usually as reliable as they come, Lowry has connected on only 20 of his past 32 attempts from the charity stripe. Despite the elbow issue that seems to be the cause of these struggles, the 30-year-old is still logging major minutes.

Stormin' Norman

Not much is usually expected out of second-round draft picks, especially in their rookie seasons. Well, after bouncing between Raptors 905 and the big club, Norman Powell has really come into his own. He's started the past nine games due to his defensive intensity, and is tasked with guarding the opposing team's best wing player off the bat. He even saw time against Russell Westbrook this week. The defence is his calling card, but Powell's starting to flourish offensively. He's shown off some nasty athleticism and has developed a reliable three-point stroke. Keep your eye on this kid tonight.

The Lance Stephenson Adventure

Whenever Lance Stephenson sees the court, he's entertaining. He's actually been pretty good for the Grizzlies since being acquired at the trade deadline, averaging 14.5 points per game on 49 per cent shooting. Injuries have given the University of Cincinnati product a bigger opportunity with his new club, and he's taking advantage of the extra workload.

Where to Watch: Sportsnet One, 8pm EST