Minnesota Timberwolves vs Phoenix Suns Predictions

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Minnesota Timberwolves vs Phoenix Suns Predictions

A couple of Western Conference juggernauts go at it tonight in Phoenix as the 5-1 Suns welcome the 4-3 Minnesota Timberwolves. Catch the game live on TNT from 10 pm ET, right after the Chicago Bulls vs Brooklyn Nets game.

Points Spread: Timberwolves +5

It was a disappointing loss over the weekend for the Minnesota Timberwolves as they fell on the road in San Antonio 107-98, failing to break the century mark for the first time this season. To make matters worse, it was the 2nd time they lost to the Spurs in less than a week, which is alarming for a team that is aiming to finish as one of the Top 4 squads in the loaded Western Conference. Aside from Karl-Anthony Towns who had 26 points and 11 rebounds, nobody else showed up. Rudy Gobert had just 9 points, while D’Angelo Russell finished with just 10 points on a miserable 5-for-17 shooting.

The Timberwolves now have the hard task of bouncing back against one of the elite teams in the West, a team that has beaten them in 7 of the last 10 meetings. Minnesota hasn’t had much success when traveling to Phoenix, they’ve covered the spread just 4 times in the last 13 games played there.

Meanwhile the Suns have been on a roll winning their last 4 games and averaging 123.5 points per game while doing so. Devin Booker celebrated his 26th birthday with 30 points against the Rockets over the weekend. The bad news is their center Deandre Ayton rolled his ankle in the win which is likely going to keep him out of tonight’s game and leave a big hole in the middle of the paint. That’s a big blow for the Suns ambitions as they enter tonight’s game owning the 4th best defensive rating in the NBA. During the current win streak opponents have averaged just 105 points against them and Phoenix is doing a tremendous job at defending close to the basket holding teams to just 44.7 points in the paint which is the 9th best mark in the NBA. All those numbers go out the water if Ayton isn’t available to play, Phoenix will have to change things up a bit as they simply cannot match up well with Gobert and Towns without him.

Total Points: Under 228.5

Scoring 124 points per game is no longer an option for these Suns as they don’t have Ayton, who is averaging 15.4 points per game this season. I’d expect the Suns to slow things down here as that’s their best chance of getting a result against the high flying Timberwolves. These teams play contrasting styles when it comes to offense – the Suns rank only 24th in pace of play averaging 98.4 possessions per game, while Minnesota is all the way up in 4th averaging 103.3 per game.

This being a home game for Phoenix and them having Chris Paul on their roster, I fully expect them to dictate the tempo of this game. Both teams also rank in the Top 6 when it comes to defensive rating, so it won’t be easy scoring the basketball for either side here. The 10 most recent meetings have averaged 223.8 points per game, I think our best bet here is to go with the under.

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