NBA Predictions: Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Los Angeles Lakers

Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Los Angeles Lakers
Friday, 12/20/13, 10:30 PM EST
Opening Point Spread:  Minnesota -2.5
Current Betting Line:  Minnesota -5
Opening Total:  212
Current Total:  210
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Minnesota Timberwolves are 13-8 SU when scoring 100 or more points this season
The Minnesota Timberwolves are 13-8 SU when scoring 100 or more points this season

Minnesota has alternated wins and losses over its last five games, as it comes off a 120-109 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers as three-point home favorites Wednesday, while going OVER the betting total of 213.5.  The Timberwolves were led by center Nikola Pekovic, who scored a season-high 30 points against the Blazers, while forward Kevin Love has average 30.0 points in his last six contests.  The franchise is 5-9 SU on the road this season, including a 3-5 mark versus Western Conference opponents.  Minnesota is 15-7-1 ATS in its last 23 games versus teams with a losing record.

The Timberwolves snapped a 22-game losing streak to the Lakers by picking up a 113-90 victory at the Staples Center on Nov. 10, as they opened with the highest-scoring quarter in club history in that affair.  Minnesota is 13-8 SU when hitting the century mark offensively, while it has dropped all five games when failing to do so.  Love and Pekovic led the charge of the squad racking up 72 points in the paint last time out—a franchise single-game best dating to the 1996-97 campaign.

Los Angeles returns home after splitting a four-game road trip, which ended with a 96-92 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies as 2.5-point underdogs Tuesday, while going UNDER the betting total of 193.5.  The Lakers will be playing without star Kobe Bryant again for at least a month, as he suffered a knee injury last time out, which can’t be ignored when looking over the NBA betting lines.  He was averaging 13.8 points and 4.3 rebounds in 29.5 minutes of action.  Los Angeles is 5-2-1 ATS in its last eight home games versus a team with a losing road record.

The Lakers are 6-6 at home this season, including a 4-5 mark versus conference foes.  Los Angeles has won eight of nine games when leading or tied entering the fourth quarter this season, which is important to consider when making your NBA betting predictions.  The bench has outscored its counterparts 21 times in 25 games—ranking second in the league in averaging 46.4 points per game.

Sports bettors will likely back the Timberwolves, as they’ve gone 6-2 ATS in their last eight trips to Southern California.

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