Western Conference NBA Betting Preview: Minnesota Timberwolves at L.A. Clippers
Betting odds courtesy of Bovada
The Minnesota Timberwolves enter the game sub-.500 at 13-14, but the team has perplexingly outscored opponents 105.2-102.0 through 27 games. Realistically, this is a team that could be far better and Kevin Love and company will try to get it on track against an L.A. Clippers squad that NBA oddsmakers at Bovada find to be 5-point favorites in tonight’s contest.
Last game, the Wolves fell 104-91 to the Lakers despite a strong performance from Kevin Love, who had 25 points and 13 rebounds. Love is averaging 25.2 points and 13.7 rebounds on the season and stands out as potentially the best free agent in 2016.
Love has established himself as arguably the league’s best at the 4-spot, but the Wolves still are struggling. Kevin Martin has been a nice addition and is scoring as usual (20.4 points per game), but Ricky Rubio still has a lot of progress to be made before the Spaniard fulfills his vast potential.
The L.A. Clippers are 19-9 on the season and triumphed over Denver 112-91 on Saturday night. The Clips boast the league’s 5th highest scoring offense, averaging 104.5 points per game, but it has been the defensive improvements installed by first-year coach Doc Rivers that have improved the team. The Clips are surrendering just 98.5 points per game (10th best in the NBA), and that had long been the Achilles’ heel of the team under coach Vinny Del Negro.
The Clips sport a balanced scoring attack led by Blake Griffin’s 20.5 points per game. Chris Paul is posting a PER of 27.7 and averaging a league-best 11.3 assists per game. The tandem is supported by the strong play of 6th man Jamal Crawford and J.J. Redick. The pair of sharpshooters combine to average 32.3 points per game. Redick is out six to eight weeks with a torn ligament in his right elbow.
Minnesota Trends: OVER 4-0 in last 4 when opponent scores 100 or more in previous game; OVER 7-1 in last 8 following SU loss of more than 10 points; OVER 5-1 in last 6 following ATS loss.
Los Angeles Trends: 4-0 ATS in last 4 following SU win of more than 10; 5-0 ATS in last 5 when opponent allows more than 100 points in previous game; 4-0 ATS in last 4 overall.
Head-to-head: OVER 6-0 in last 6 in LA; Timberwolves 1-4 ATS in last 5 meetings; Timberwolves 4-1 ATS in last 5 in LA.