Preview: Rockets at Timberwolves

The Houston Rockets are back to streaking in the right direction and are coming off back-to-back dominating wins over the San Antonio Spurs and the Chicago Bulls. The Rockets will try to make it three in a row when they visit the Minnesota Timberwolves on Monday.

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Houston surrendered an average of 124 points during a four-game slide but was stronger on the defensive end Friday and Saturday while holding the Spurs and Bulls to 105 points apiece. The turnaround on defense coincides with the healthy return of point guard Chris Paul, who sat out three games with leg soreness before returning on Friday and notching a double-double in back-to-back games. The Timberwolves had a four-game winning streak come to an end in a 118-109 setback at home to the Boston Celtics on Saturday. “We had some miscues and made some mistakes. It was our fault,” Minnesota center Karl-Anthony Towns told reporters. “They’re a great team and made us pay for those mistakes.”

TV: 8 p.m. ET, AT&T SportsNet Southwest (Houston), FS North (Minnesota)

ABOUT THE ROCKETS (11-11): Houston star James Harden scored 30 points on 9-of-16 shooting in 30 minutes on Saturday and is averaging 35.4 points over the last seven games. Harden needed to play an average of 29 minutes in the last two games with the Rockets rounding into form from a health perspective and took some time after Saturday’s win to extol the virtues of a short injury list. “Everyone is much more efficient when we’re together and we have a full roster, as you can see these last few games,” Harden told reporters.

ABOUT THE TIMBERWOLVES (11-12): Minnesota is leaning on former MVP and current sixth man Derrick Rose for leadership, and the veteran is not afraid to get on his younger teammates. “At this stage in my life and my career, that’s what I’m here for, to be able to express how I feel, express what guys want to say but don’t say it,” Rose told reporters. “It’s easy for me to communicate with people. They listen to me. I guess they trust me and believe in me.” Rose is leading the team on the court as well and scored 26 points on 11-of-18 shooting in Saturday’s loss – the fourth time in the last six games that he scored at least 20 points.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Timberwolves SF Andrew Wiggins scored 17 points on 5-of-12 shooting Saturday, snapping a string of five straight games in which he finished with fewer points than attempted field goals.

2. Rockets C Clint Capela recorded a double-double in eight of the last nine games.

3. The teams are meeting for the first time since Houston knocked off Minnesota in five games in the first round of the playoffs last spring.

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Posted in NBA, Top Fantasy Picks

Preview: Pelicans at Timberwolves

The Minnesota Timberwolves are getting a fresh start and Karl-Anthony Towns is taking advantage. Towns will welcome a trio of new teammates and try to lead the Timberwolves to back-to-back wins when they host the New Orleans Pelicans on Wednesday.

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Towns was the big winner of the trade that sent disgruntled swingman Jimmy Butler to the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for Robert Covington, Dario Saric and Jerryd Bayless, and he played like someone with a weight lifted off his shoulders in a 120-113 win over the Brooklyn Nets on Monday. The 22-year-old former No. 1 overall pick made up for 10 turnovers by scoring 25 points on 9-of-11 shooting and grabbing 21 rebounds in the victory. The Pelicans, who were reportedly involved in talks for Butler but refused to include guard Jrue Holiday in any potential deal, come in hot with wins in three straight after starting the road trip with a 126-110 victory over East-leading Toronto on Monday. “We played really good tonight and we beat them, but it’s one game,” New Orleans coach Alvin Gentry told reporters. “I’d like to say this is going to springboard us, but it’s one game and they understand that, too. It’s a good win for us on the road against a very good team.”

TV: 8 p.m. ET, ESPN, FS New Orleans, FS North (Minnesota)

ABOUT THE PELICANS (7-6): Holiday showed why New Orleans insisted he not be included in any deal when he collected 29 points on 12-of-19 shooting and 14 assists on Monday while taking part in a defensive effort that held Toronto’s Kawhi Leonard, Kyle Lowry and Danny Green to a combined 9-of-33 from the floor. “I think Jrue (Holiday) had a great floor game, and I thought he was fantastic defensively,” Gentry told reporters. “If Kawhi goes 7-for-20, you’ve done an outstanding job on him because not only is he a great defender, but he is also a great scorer and great shooter, and I thought Jrue did a really good job on him.” Holiday is averaging 23.2 points on 54.1 percent shooting and 10.8 assists over the last five games.

ABOUT THE TIMBERWOLVES (5-9): Covington, Saric and Bayless sat out on Monday, hours after the trade was finalized, but will practice with the team on Tuesday and are expected to be in uniform Wednesday. “We wanted quality players. That was important for us,” Minnesota coach Tom Thibodeau told reporters. “(We get) two starters (Covington and Saric) off a team that won 52 games, and they’re both young. … Once we get to that point where we felt we were getting multiple rotational players, we felt it would be time to execute the deal.” Saric, 24, got off to a slow start in 2018-19 after averaging 14.6 points in a breakout 2017-18 campaign while Covington, 27, is shooting 39 percent from 3-point range and was leading Philadelphia in steals (1.8) at the time of the trade.

BUZZER BEATERS

1.Pelicans PF Nikola Mirotic (ankle) sat out the last two games and is day-to-day.

2. Bayless (knee) has yet to make his season debut and is likely out at least another week.

3. Minnesota took all four meetings last season by an average of 13.3 points.

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Posted in NBA, Top Fantasy Picks

Preview: Timberwolves at Lakers

The Los Angeles Lakers are still trying to find their stride as they enter Wednesday’s home game against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Inconsistency plagued the team during the first 10 games of the LeBron James era and the Lakers will attempt to rebound from Sunday’s debacle against the Toronto Raptors.

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Los Angeles trailed 41-17 after the first quarter on Sunday en route to succumbing 121-107 to the Raptors in a contest in which Toronto was missing star forward Kawhi Leonard. “They just came out and just hit us right in the mouth,” James told reporters. “It’s very, very hard to make a game out of that when you’re trying to expend so much energy trying to get back into it.” Minnesota is experiencing its own issues with three straight losses to begin a five-game road trip and the near-daily drama circulating around disgruntled shooting guard Jimmy Butler. “I just hoop,” Butler, who has requested a trade, told reporters. “I play basketball. I go out there, and I try to win home or away. I think that’s my job. I’m not worried about nothing — none of that. (Reporters) continue to ask those questions, but it’s not going to change how I go about the game. It’s not going to change how I interact with guys in this locker room. We’ll be just fine.”

TV: 10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, Spectrum SportsNet (Los Angeles)

ABOUT THE TIMBERWOLVES (4-7): Guard Derrick Rose recorded 21 points in Monday’s 120-109 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers after missing most of the previous two games with an ankle injury. Rose has been surprisingly good this season while averaging 17.4 points, with his best outing being the career-high 50 he put up against the Utah Jazz on Oct. 31. Center Karl-Anthony Towns recovered from a slow start to post four double-doubles in the past five games and he is averaging 21.8 points and 12 rebounds during the stretch.

ABOUT THE LAKERS (4-6): Los Angeles has its own bouts of drama percolating as coach Luke Walton is coming under fire during the early stages of James’ tenure. Management usually understands patience is required to make so many new moving parts fit but president of basketball operations Magic Johnson’s proclamation that Walton’s job is safe included this disclaimer: “Unless something drastic happen.” The defense has been a huge problem — the Lakers allowed over 120 points in five of their six losses and stand 27th in scoring defense (120 per game) while the offense ranks third at 118.9.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Butler scored 32 points as the Timberwolves prevailed 124-120 on Oct. 29 for their fifth consecutive win over the Lakers.

2. Minnesota PG Jeff Teague (knee) is expected to miss his fifth straight game.

3. Los Angeles backup G Josh Hart is just 13-of-39 shooting over the past six contests.

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Posted in NBA, Top Fantasy Picks

2018 NBA Playoffs

First-round previews

If the playoffs are anything like the wild finish to the regular season, hold on. It took an overtime play-in win just to determine the Western Conference playoff teams, and little was settled outside of the top two seeds in the East heading into Wednesday’s season finale. But now that we have the sixteen teams, it’s on. The NBA’s second season officially begins on Saturday afternoon.

Toronto Raptors vs. Washington Wizards

The Raptors have all sorts of pressure on them this postseason, but they couldn’t have done much better than facing the fledgling Wizards at the start. Washington, which has lost 14 of its last 21 games, welcomed five-time All-Star John Wall back on March 31 after he missed more than two months with a knee injury. Still, Toronto — which was third in offensive rating and fifth in defensive rating this season — should be able to survive.

Enter the TOR/WAS Series Tournament

Boston Celtics vs. Milwaukee Bucks

Boston, which is without five-time All-Star Kyrie Irving for the playoffs and guard Marcus Smart until at least late April, has its hands full against these Bucks. Milwaukee’s 106-102 win over Boston on April 3 serves as the best evidence of how they match up at the moment. The Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo will be looking to advance past the first round for the first time (he’s 0-for-2 thus far).

Philadelphia 76ers vs. Miami Heat

Philadelphia comes in as the league’s hottest team, having won 16 games in a row. Never mind that All-Star big man Joel Embiid went down with an orbital fracture in his left eye eight games into the stretch, the Sixers just kept rolling. When Embiid was asked if he might be able to play for Game 1, he told reporters it’s “unlikely but still a chance.”

Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Indiana Pacers

LeBron James is no stranger to memorable playoff matchups against the Pacers, but this is a different version of the familiar story. With coach Nate McMillan and All-Star guard Victor Oladipo leading the way, the Pacers were a wonderful surprise this season.

Enter the CLE/IND Series Tournament

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Houston Rockets vs. Minnesota Timberwolves

The Rockets dominated the season series against the Timberwolves, but only one of those games (a 126-108 win on Feb. 13) included Minnesota’s Jimmy Butler from beginning to end. The four-time All-Star tore his meniscus in their second matchup on Feb. 23, then missed the final two meetings before returning on Friday. The Rockets, meanwhile, lost key defender Luc Mbah a Moute to a dislocated shoulder on Tuesday, and he’s expected to miss the first round — if not longer.

Enter the HOU/MIN Series Tournament

Golden State Warriors vs. San Antonio Spurs

This is a rematch of last year’s Western Conference finals in name alone, as Golden State is without two-time MVP Stephen Curry this time around and the Spurs’ franchise centerpiece, Kawhi Leonard, remains out after playing just nine games this season. But if anyone is capable of creating a gameplan to upset the ailing defending champions, it’s San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich. His Spurs had the fourth-best defensive rating this season. The Warriors, meanwhile, have lost 10 of their last 17 games.

Enter the GSW/SAS Series Tournament

Portland Trail Blazers vs. New Orleans Pelicans

The Trail Blazers lost seven of their last 12 games, but the regular season finale win over Utah was enough to earn them the No. 3 seed. Portland, which had the league’s ninth-best defensive rating this season, will have all it can handle with the way Pelicans star Anthony Davis has been playing (a league-leading 30.2 points, 11.9 rebounds and 3.2 blocks per game since DeMarcus Cousins’ season-ending Achilles injury Jan. 26).

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Utah Jazz

The Jazz boasted the NBA’s best defense for the final few months of the regular season, and now they’ll try to stop a star-studded Thunder squad that finished 10th in offensive rating. But the Jazz have to score too, and therein lies the most pressing question of their postseason: Can rookie guard Donovan Mitchell be the same star-caliber player on this stage? Utah certainly needs him to be.

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Posted in NBA

Nuggets at Timberwolves Preview

The final day of the regular season will decide seeding in each conference and give several teams a chance to get healthy or build momentum heading into the playoffs, but only one game is win or go home. The Minnesota Timberwolves host the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday, and the winner will advance to the postseason while the loser heads to the offseason earlier than anticipated.

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The Timberwolves were in third place in the Western Conference at several points this season and could still finish as high as fifth with a win on Wednesday and some help, or they could miss the playoffs and continue a tough stretch in which the franchise has not qualified for the postseason since 2004. “Don’t nobody like losing,” Minnesota All-Star swingman Jimmy Butler told reporters. “Nobody in this locker room does at least. I think this city deserves to be in the playoffs. We’re the only ones who control that. … If we win this game Wednesday, I think that puts us in the playoffs, right? So that’s what we’ve got to do.” The Nuggets are coming in hot with wins in the last six games and are well acquainted with win or go home basketball after needing a win to stay alive on Monday. Denver managed to overcome an 11-point, second-half deficit and earn an 88-82 victory while holding Portland to 13 points in the fourth quarter.

TV: 8 p.m. ET, Altitude (Denver), FS North (Minnesota)

ABOUT THE NUGGETS (46-35): Denver center Nikola Jokic is driving the team forward and collected 15 points, 20 rebounds and 11 assists in Monday’s win for his second straight triple-double and 10th of the season. The 23-year-old is averaging 23.7 points, 16 rebounds and 8.2 assists during the six-game winning streak but suffered through his worst shooting night of the stretch in a 100-96 home win over Minnesota on Thursday, when he went 6-of-20 from the floor. Shooting guard Gary Harris missed that meeting with a knee injury but returned from an 11-game absence on Monday and eased back into the rotation with 12 points in 18 minutes off the bench.

ABOUT THE TIMBERWOLVES (46-35): Minnesota picked up wins in the last two games, coinciding with Butler’s return from knee surgery. The veteran swingman played 23 minutes against the Lakers and the Grizzlies and averaged 16.5 points while going a combined 10-of-18 from the floor, and he was not afraid to call out his team after it fell behind the lowly Grizzlies by 10 points in the first half on Monday. “We were just playing soft,” Butler told reporter. “We tend to do that from time to time. Whenever we play hard, good things happen.”

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Timberwolves PF Taj Gibson (neck) was limited to eight minutes on Monday and is questionable for Wednesday.

2. Nuggets SF Will Barton is averaging 20.3 points during the winning streak, raising his season mark to 15.6.

3. Denver snapped a four-game losing streak in the series with Thursday’s win and is looking for its first victory at Minnesota since Nov. 3, 2016.

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Posted in NBA

NBA Fantasy Basketball Prediction

Minnesota Timberwolves vs Sacramento Kings

Andrew Wiggins’ Timberwolves, back from their biggest victory of the year will travel West to face the host Sacramento Kings at Sleep Train Arena this Thursday.  This NBA Fantasy Basketball prediction is brought you by FanPicks.com. Come PLAY in our Daily Fantasy Basketball contests at FanPicks and get a free chance to win $1 Million dollars!

NBA Fantasy Basketball Prediction

Sacramento is really on a up and down hill all year having not been capable to get 2 straight wins in a month span now. It’s to understand where the team is headed. Their leader DeMarcus Cousins has been relegated to playing only in home games in one of the strangest developments this season. That strange development is really what makes the organization so dysfunctional and unpredictable. Their real issue is their defense as they’re dead last in points allowed per game nearly this whole campaign. For them, this is a winnable game but the T-Wolves have shown what their enormous potential can do to big teams 2 days ago when they upset the Warriors in Oakland.

 

Minnesota have lost 3 of their last 3 games but come into this game off their biggest win of the season. Not only they defeated the reigning NBA champions, Golden State Warriors on the road and were a 15-point easy underdog, but have really shown what their potential talent is all about.  With youngsters on their squad like Andrew Wiggins, Karl-Anthony Towns, Shabazz Muhammad and Zach LaVine, the sky is limit for their future. A great sign as well is that all of their young guns made big contributions in the win against the Warriors. They simply showed the NBA just how fearful this team will be in the years to come, as well as a danger for the Sacramento Kings.

 

 

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Daily Fantasy Basketball Prognostics Clippers vs Timberwolves

Dominate your competition with our NBA Daily Fantasy Basketball Prognostics, create the winning lineup at Fanpicks.com. The surging Los Angeles Clippers (46-27) visits the Minnesota Timberwolves (35-49).Fantasy Basketball
The Clippers etched their third straight victory on Monday night with a dominating 114-90 win over the visiting Boston Celtics. In a match-up that saw the team’s bench outscore the starting five 67-47, reservist Austin Rivers emerged as the best scorer with 16 points. DeAndre Jordan garnered 15 points and 13 rebounds for the double-double, going 5 of 8 from field-goal range and 5 of 7 from the paint. Chris Paul also had a double-double of his own with 13-point and a 14-assist outing. He added 4 turnovers in the process. Paul has logged in an average of 9.9 assists per game for his team this season, the fourth-best in the NBA. Jamal Crawford contributed with 15 points and 4 three-pointers off the bench. Los Angeles remains locked in fourth place in the Western Conference. Power forward, Blake Griffin, is currently serving a four-game suspension and is eligible to return on April 3rd.

Minnesota have defeated three of their last four opponents. In their last match-up, they put away the Phoenix Suns at Target Center, 121-116. All members of the squad’s starting roster posted in double-digits. All of this led by Andrew Wiggins, who blasted out with 32 points, 5 boards and 3 blocks, shooting 6 of 13 from the field and 17 of 21 from the free throw line. Rookie of the Year front-runner Karl-Anthony Towns and Ricky Rubio both finished the night with double-doubles. Towns totaled 27 point and 10 rebounds, while Rubio had 17 points and 11 assists. Towns’ first NBA season has been an impressive one, as he currently averages 18.3 points and 10.3 rebounds, participating in all 74 of the Wolves’ games. And to round out the lineup, Gorgui Dieng scored 11 points and 9 boards Monday versus the Suns. The T-Wolves sits at 13th place in the West with eight meetings remaining on their calendar.

Top Fantasy Picks

G Chris Paul (LAC)

G Ricky Rubio (MIN)

C Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)

Posted in NBA

Fantasy Basketball NBA Preview

Golden State Warriors vs Minnesota Timberwolves

The Minnesota Timberwolves will host the visiting Golden State Warriors, just fresh out of their worst performance of the season in San Antonio as they’ll try to avoid their first losing streak of the season at the Target Center. FanPicks is proud to bring you this Fantasy Basketball NBA preview. Take a break from March Madness and come play in our NBA Magic Million contest where you can win up to a $1 million this week at FanPicks.
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Despite having only won 3 out of their last 10 games and occupying the last place in the West’s Northwest division, the Timberwolves have shown signs of resurgence lately during hard-fought games like their latest defeat at the hands of the Houston Rockets, 116-111 or last week against the Suns 107-104.

Their rising stars, Karl-Anthony Towns, Andrew Wiggins and Zach LaVine are all progressing extremely well. Towns, on his way to the Rookie of the Year award, had a standout double-double performance against Houston with 32 pts, 11 boards, 2 steals, an assist and a block. Wiggins contributed with 21 pts, 5 assists, 2 boards and 3 steals while LaVine added 15 pts, 3 assists, 2 boards, 4 steals and a block. They will need a display like the one 10 days ago when they brought their maximum energy and potential, upsetting the Oklahoma City Thunder in Oklahoma 99-96.

 

The reigning NBA champs Golden State Warriors are coming fresh off their worst offensive performance of the season in the forgettable 87-79 loss to the San Antonio Spurs Saturday. They really endured their most difficult night of the season, breaking a 7 game winning streak and 7th loss on the road of the year. Klay Thompson’s 15 pts, 5 boards, assist, block and steal helped pace the Warriors. It was Stephen Curry’s shutdown that really didn’t help. San Antonio’s defense limited him to only 14 pts, 6 boards, 6 assists, 2 steals and at his lowest field-goal and 3-point percentage. Draymond Green nearly had his typical triple double performance with 11 pts, 9 boards, 8 assists and a block.

This time it will be different story since the Spurs own the best defense in the league meanwhile the Timberwolves own one of the worst. After this game, the Warriors will host their next 4 games in Oakland, where they remain undefeated this season.

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T-Wolves vs Pelicans

FanPicks.com NBA Preview

 

 

The Minnesota Timberwolves (13-29) pay a visit to the Smoothie King Center to take on the New Orleans Pelicans (13-27) on Tuesday. Fanpicks.com is proud to announce its RotoPicker free to use tool, which allows you to create winning line ups and dominate your fantasy basketball competition.  Play the most exciting contest, including the newest $10K Grand Action and Point Spread contests only at Fanpicks.com the premiere daily fantasy basketball site

Projected Lineup

Starting Lineup

Minnesota will try to put an end to their 6 game road losing streak and build on last Sunday’s win over the Phoenix Suns. It marked the Timberwolves 2nd highest scoring tally of the season. Ricky Rubio and Andrew Wiggins led with a pair of 18-point efforts, while standout rookie Karl-Anthony Towns scored 14 points and 8 rebounds. 4 of Minnesota’s reserves, Gorgui Dieng, Shabazz Muhammad, Zach LaVine and Kevin Martin, posted double-digit scoring. The blowout win snapped their 9 game losing streak.

 

The Pelicans have improved recently. After a stretch in which they lost 6 of 7 games, New Orleans bounced back with consecutive victories over the Sacramento Kings and Charlotte Hornets. Monday, they suffered a heartbreaking 101-99 defeat at the hands of the Memphis Grizzlies. Despite the loss, they’ve showed a lot of good stuff that stretch. During pre-game warmups, Tyreke Evans experienced some knee soreness and missed the Grizzlies contest, leaving Norris Cole and Jrue Holiday to man the point. Holiday registered 23 points and 9 assists. Anthony Davis collected 21 points and 8 rebounds. If Evans is unable to take the floor again, Cole should receive the start with Holiday filling in as back up.

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Fanpicks.com NBA Game Preview

Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Oklahoma City Thunder

Author : Aldo Panessidi

The Minnesota Timberwolves (12-28) will be hosted by the Oklahoma City Thunder (28-12) on Friday evening. Fanpicks.com is proud to announce its RotoPicker free to use tool, which allows you to create winning line ups and dominate your fantasy basketball competition.  Play the most exciting contest, including the newest $25K Grand Action and Point Spread contests only at Fanpicks.com the premiere daily fantasy basketball

Starting Lineup The Timberwolves have won only one game in their last 13 outings and are starting to make a case for worst team in the West after being edged 107-104 on the road against the Houston Rockets on Wednesday. Andrew Wiggins again showed flashes of the player and leader the organization hopes that he will flourish into, leading the team with 28 point and draining 8 of 9 free throw attempts. Kevin Martin posted 22 points from the bench, while rookie Karl-Anthony Towns put up 12 points and 16 rebounds. Wiggins and Towns are combining for an average of 35.5 points per game for the team. Minnesota is struggling on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball and simply don’t yet have the experience or depth to compete at a Playoff level. The Wolves are tied for the second-worst away record in the NBA at 1-9.

The Thunder have had an up-and-down start to 2016 after finishing December with 12-3 record. The team has won four of its last six contests, the latest in a dominating effort at home against the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night, 108-89. Kevin Durant was the top scorer for OKC with 29 points and 10 boards, making 9 of 14 from the field. Durant is the third-ranked scorer in the league, averaging 26.7 points per match-up. Russell Westbrook finished the game with zero points in 15 minutes played following a second quarter ejection after getting into an altercation with Dallas guard J.J. Barea. Serge Ibaka picked up the slack in the form of a double-double, recording 20 points and 11 rebounds. Ibaka also went 3-for-6 from long range, as did Dion Waiters from the bench, as the former Cavalier finished with 18 points. The Thunder are locked into first place in the Northwest Division, a clear 10 games ahead of the second place Utah Jazz.

 

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Fanpicks.com NBA Game Preview

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Minnesota Timberwolves

 

The Oklahoma City Thunder (26-12) will be hosted by the Minnesota Timberwolves  (12-26) at Target Center in Minneapolis on Tuesday evening. Fanpicks.com is proud to announce its RotoPicker free to use tool, which allows you to create winning line ups and dominate your fantasy basketball competition.  Play the most exciting contest, including the newest $25K Grand Action and Point Spread contests only at Fanpicks.com the premiere daily fantasy basketball

Starting LineupThe Thunder have been one of the best teams in the NBA since the beginning of December, but they are in a bit of a rut right now. They are just 2-2 over their last four games and nearly lost to the struggling Los Angeles Lakers just last week. This appears to be just a blip on the radar though, as the offense and defense are performing at top-levels. In fact, the offense ranks second in the NBA just behind the Golden State Warriors in scoring and the defense has been top-10 since the middle of November. If there is one blemish with this team it would be their road woes, as they were 5-6 on the road before winning four of their last five. In any case, look for them to continue their recent road success, as they are double-digit favorites heading into this matchup.

The Timberwolves got off to a surprising start this season, but are regressing hard right now. They have lost 10 of their last 11 games and are really struggling on the offensive end. In fact, they haven’t cracked 100 points in 11-straight games and haven’t scored more than 102 in 16-straight games. Much of that has to be credited to these offensive rotations the coach sticks out there. Coach Sam Mitchell still insists on starting Kevin Garnett and playing Tayshaun Prince an abundance of minutes and it’s a wonder why with all the young talent they have. Young players like Zach LaVine, Gorgui Dieng and Shabazz Muhammad have been riding the bench and it’s just a mysterious situation in Minnespolis right now. It likely won’t get any better here, as they come into this game as huge underdogs in their home building where they have struggled all season long.

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Fanpicks.com NBA Game Preview

Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Minnesota Timberwolves

 

The Cleveland Cavaliers (24-9) will be hosted by the Minnesota Timberwolves (12-24) on Friday evening. Fanpicks.com is proud to announce its RotoPicker free to use tool, which allows you to create winning line ups and dominate your fantasy basketball competition.  Play the most exciting contest, including the newest $25K Grand Action and Point Spread contests only at Fanpicks.com the premiere daily fantasy basketball

Starting Lineup The Cavaliers spent Wednesday night building on their five-game tear to kick off the new year, beating the Washington Wizards on the road, 121-115. The team’s starters seemed unstoppable, with LeBron James and Kyrie Irving combining for 66 points. James added 10 boards for the double-double and went 12-for-22 from the field. Irving has been in the zone since returning from injury in December, posting 32 point on Wednesday and is averaging 17.4 points since his comeback. J.R. Smith contributed 25 points and five three-pointers as Cleveland looks to have a lock on first place in the Eastern Conference for the foreseeable future. The team plays six of their next seven games away from Quicken Loans Arena where they own a somewhat pedestrian 9-8 record.

The promising Timberwolves are looking towards a bright future, as their present is anything but inspiring on the back of eight out of nine losses and four defeats in a row. Minnesota lost 78-74 at home to the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday, falling to 5-14 at Target Center. Still, flashes were on display for the team that Wolves fans hope will develop into a winning formula in years to come, as Karl-Anthony Towns led the tam in scoring with a 14-point, 14-rebound double-double. Andrew Wiggins added 11 points, shooting 4-for-14 from the paint. The team made only three long range shots all game, and find themselves in a freefall in the West (where they sit in 13th place) after losing earlier in the week on the road to the woeful Philadelphia 76ers.

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Fanpicks.com NBA Game Preview

The Minnesota Timberwolves (12-22) will be visiting the Wells Fargo Center to challenge the Philadelphia 76ers (3-33), on Monday evening. Dominate your competitions with our free to use RotoPicker tool, create the winning fantasy NBA contest lineups for Fanpicks.com

The Minnesota Timberwolves could use a win after winning five of their last six games. The Minnesota Timberwolves are averaging 99.7 points on 44.6 percent shooting and allowing 102.7 points on 45.6 percent shooting. Andrew Wiggins is averaging 20.5 points and 1.7 assists while Karl-Anthony Towns is averaging 16.1 points and 9.4 rebounds. Zach LaVine is dishing  3.2 assists and Gorgui Dieng is grabbing 6.3 rebounds. The Minnesota Timberwolves are shooting 32.4 percent from beyond the arc and 79.5 percent from the free throw line. The Timberwolves are allowing 35 percent shooting from deep and are forcing 14.8 turnovers per game. The Minnesota Timberwolves have lost eight of their last 10 road games.

The Philadelphia 76ers could use a win after losing six of their last eight games. The Philadelphia 76ers are averaging 92.5 points on 42 percent shooting and allowing 104.8 points on 45.8 percent shooting. Jahlil Okafor is averaging 17.3 points and 7.7 rebounds while Ish Smith is averaging 13.4 points and 7.6 assists. Robert Covington is grabbing 5.7 rebounds and Isaiah Canaan is dishing two assists. The Philadelphia 76ers are shooting 31.8 percent from beyond the arc and 68.9 percent from the free throw line. The 76ers are allowing 36.1 percent shooting from deep and are forcing 14.4 turnovers per game. The Philadelphia 76ers have lost five straight home games. Jakarr Sampson and Hollis Thompson are questionable.

The Timberwolves are 7-17-1 ATS in their last 25 Monday games and 0-4 ATS in their last 4 vs. Eastern Conference. The 76ers are 7-2-1 ATS in their last 10 vs. NBA Northwest and 5-15-1 ATS in their last 21 home games. The Timberwolves are 1-4 ATS in the last 5 meetings.

I’m not buying chalk and a Timberwolves team that continues to struggle on the road. The 76ers have been competing ever since getting Smith.

Expected Starting Lineups (not confirmed):

Minnesota Timberwolves

PG: Ricky Rubio

SG: Andrew Wiggins

SF: Tayshaun Prince

PF: Kevin Garnett

C: Karl-Anthony Towns

 

Philadelphia 76ers

PG: Ish Smith

SG: Isaiah Carson

SF: JaKarr Sampson

PF: Jerami Grant

C: Nerlens Noel

Posted in NBA