NBA Sunday Picks: Minnesota Timberwolves at Brooklyn Nets
Betting odds courtesy of Bovada
The Minnesota Timberwolves have won its past two contests, but at 36-35 the playoffs are almost mathematically impossible, trailing 8th seed Memphis by 6.5 games. Minnesota will travel to face a hot Brooklyn Nets team that has won seven of its past 10 and is seated fifth in the East. The Nets will be 4 point favorites according to NBA oddsmakers at Bovada.
Brooklyn has been able to surge in the East without its starting center Brook Lopez, who is out for the season. The Nets have improved its defense to 9th best (99.2 points allowed per game), and the team should have enough offense to be a problem for its opponent in the playoffs. If it began today, the Nets would square off against the Chicago Bulls in a very winnable matchup.
The Nets can rely on Joe Johnson, Deron Williams and Paul Pierce for offense and all three are tested veterans that should be up for a challenge in the playoffs. All three have suffered major declines statistically, but the talent is still there. Pierce had 22 in the Nets’ win over Cleveland on Friday (Mar 28) night. The Nets got 48 points from its bench in the game and hit 14-of-29 from three-point range in the game.
Minnesota got a feel good stomping over Los Angeles Lakers on Friday (Mar 28) night, winning 143-107. Kevin Love had a triple double with 22 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists and Nikola Pekovic hit 9-of-10 from the floor for 26 points. Love has been linked to L.A. in free agency rumors, so it’s interesting to see him turn in one of his most well-rounded performances against it. Love is averaging 26.3 points, 12.6 rebounds and 4.4 assists per game this season.
Over his last 10 games, Love has averaged six assists per game. For whatever questions may exist about Love’s defensive abilities, his offensive game is potent and evolving. His ability to function from the high post makes him a versatile player that can be inserted in any number of offensive schemes. Though the Wolves have been consistently competitive, Love seems to be growing tired of being on the outside looking in of the playoff picture, and most figure he is a sure bet to leave Minnesota when he becomes a free agent. As arguably the best 4-man in the NBA, Love will draw a max contract and mass attention around the league as teams bid for his services.
MIN Trends: OVER 5-0 in last 5 after scoring 100 or more in previous game; 0-5 ATS in last 5 Sunday games; OVER 4-0 in last 4 games following ATS win.
BRO Trends: OVER 4-0 in last 4 following SU win; OVER 6-0 in last 6 after scoring 100 points or more in previous game; OVER 5-0 in last 5 following SU win of more than 10 points.
Head-to-head: OVER 4-0 in last 4 meetings in Brooklyn; Timberwolves 15-4 ATS in last 19 meetings.