NBA Pick: Timberwolves ML (-140) at Bookmaker (visit our Bookmaker Review)
Sort of the “forgotten” game on the NBA’s three-game slate on Thursday features the Washington Wizards at the Minnesota Timberwolves. Which side of the 2.5-point spread (or short moneyline) is the best play at the top-rated Minnesota betting sites? Let’s see what the NBA odds tell us.
Washington Wizards vs. Minnesota Timberwolves
Thursday, February 16, 2023 – 08:00 PM EST at Target Center
There are three games on the final night of the NBA’s first half ahead of the All-Star break – although every team has played way more than half its 82-game regular-season schedule – with two of three nationally televised by TNT. Then we have Washington at Minnesota.
This concludes the season series as on Nov. 28 in DC, the Wizards were 1-point favorites at the top-rated books and won 141-127 in one of the higher-scoring games of the NBA season – that was Washington’s only win in a span of 14 games.
Kristaps Porzingis scored a career-high 41 points, Kyle Kuzma scored 23 points and Bradley Beal added 22. That was notably the game where Wolves star Karl-Anthony Towns went down with a calf strain. KAT hasn’t played since. Anthony Edwards led the Timberwolves with 29.
Washington has won six straight in the series, covering the NBA betting spread in all, including three in a row in the Twin Cities – although Minnesota leads all-time there 16-15.
Wizards Playing Third Game in Four Nights
This concludes a three-game trip through the West for Washington, which lost 135-126 at Golden State on Monday but rolled to a 126-101 win in Portland on Tuesday. The news from that Blazers game was the return from a four-game injury absence of Kyle Kuzma, who had 33 points and nine rebounds. Kuzma is averaging career-highs in points (21.5) and assists (4.0) and his 33 games with at least 20 points already are a career-high.
Kristaps Porzingis had 28 points, 12 rebounds, and five assists, and Bradley Beal had 19 points and four assists. Porzingis is one of only three players in the league to average at least 20.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 1 block. Beal is shooting a career-best .522 from the floor and averaging 22.7 ppg. He is on track to pass Elvin Hayes (six) for the most 20-point-per-game seasons in franchise history with seven.
That’s a pretty good trio – why aren’t the Wizards better? Well, they score 113.6 ppg and allow 113.5, so that’s why they are 27-30 and 10th in the East. To make the playoffs, which means advancing past the play-in tournament if reach that, Washington is +215 with no at -275. To participate in the play-in tournament, the Wiz are -280.
It’s always wise to wait as late as possible to wager regarding possible last-minute injury news, but as of this writing, the Wizards are listing no one on the injury report. Will Barton isn’t with the team. He’s healthy but will eventually take a buyout and sign elsewhere. The 32-year-old has had a limited role with Washington this season, but started 71 games and averaged 14.7 points for the Nuggets a season ago.
A Potentially Depleted Lineup
Minnesota (31-29) sits sixth in the West, owning a tiebreaker over Dallas for the final free pass into the postseason. However, the Wolves are priced at +125 to make it and -155 to miss. They are -145 “favorites” to play in the play-in tournament for the second year in a row and that’s where I think they end up.
We mentioned above that former No. 1 overall pick Karl-Anthony Towns hasn’t played since that first Washington game due to a calf injury. There was an update on him this week and it wasn’t that good: KAT won’t be back until mid-to-late March. The team is hoping he can play 10-15 regular-season games before the postseason. The Wolves have 22 games left in the regular season, so that would put him back on the floor between March 10-20.
Wolves Listing Gobert Questionable
The Timberwolves are listing center Rudy Gobert, the three-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year, and forward Kyle Anderson as questionable but I tend to think both play. They both did in Monday’s 124-121 win in Dallas with Gobert totaling 21 points and 14 rebounds and Anderson 12 points, five assists and four boards off the bench.
The Wolves are 6-1 this season when Gobert notches 20+ points and 10+ rebounds. Anthony Edwards had 32 points and deservedly will play in his first All-Star Game Sunday. The team is 16-3 all-time when Edwards scores 32 points or more.
Minnesota is now 28-17 when scoring at least 110 points this season following the Dallas win (which clinched the season series and tiebreaker) and improved to 14-26 when also allowing at least that many. Somehow, this is only the second Thursday game of the season for the team (1-0).
Washington is 13-18 SU on the road and 16-13-2 ATS on the NBA picks while the Timberwolves are 20-12 at home and 17-15 ATS. I like them here as long as Gobert and Anderson play. Expect another shootout like the first meeting. The over is 5-0 in the Wizards’ past five vs. a team with a winning record and 5-0-1 in the Timberwolves’ past six overall.
NBA Pick: Timberwolves ML (-140) at Bookmaker
NBA pick: Over 234.5 (-110) at Bovada (visit our Bovada Review)
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