Grizzlies vs. Timberwolves Odds & Picks: Total Presents Value in Uninspiring Matchup
David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Karl-Anthony Towns.
- Two of the NBA’s least efficient offenses meet Wednesday night when the Timberwolves host the Grizzlies.
- Karl-Anthony Towns is expected to return for Minnesota, but his presence likely won't be enough to make this a high-scoring matchup.
- Matthew Trebby breaks down where the values lies in Wednesday's game below.
Grizzlies vs. Timberwolves Odds
|Grizzlies Odds||+2.5 (-105) [BET NOW]|
|Timberwolves Odds||-2.5 (-115) [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||+125/-149 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||222 [BET NOW]|
|Time||7:30 p.m. ET|
|TV||NBA League Pass|
Buckle in, folks. Two of the NBA’s six least efficient offenses meet up on Wednesday night in Minneapolis.
Both teams have dealt with injuries early this season, although the Timberwolves have their star back. The Grizzlies will be without theirs for most of the season.
Let’s find the betting value in this one from Target Center.
While Memphis ranks 27th in Offensive Rating, according to NBA Advanced Stats, the Grizzlies make up for it in typical grit and grind style defensively. Memphis’ 106.8 Defensive Rating ranked sixth in the NBA entering play on Tuesday night.
The Grizzlies were rocked in just their third game of the season by Ja Morant’s ankle sprain. On Dec. 29, he was ruled out 3-5 weeks, which means he could return toward the end of January or early February.
Without Morant, the Grizzlies do not have any proven playmaker that can take a game over. Dillon Brooks is averaging 17.4 points per game, but he’s shooting just 39.8% from the field. Jonas Valanciunas is a fine big man, averaging 14 points and 10.2 rebounds, but he’s not the kind of player to build an offense around.
The biggest spark for Memphis without Morant has been his direct replacement: point guard Tyus Jones. The former Duke standout is averaging 10.2 points, 7.7 assists and 2.0 steals per game on 30.3 minutes over his last six games, a span in which the Grizzlies have gone 3-3.
In those six games, the Grizzlies have held their opponent to 94 or fewer points four times.
While the Grizzlies have made up for their 27th-ranked offense with fantastic defense, the Timberwolves … have not.
Minnesota entered Tuesday ranked 25th in Offensive Rating and 28th in Defensive rating. Only the Bulls and Kings have worse marks than Minnesota’s 114.8 points allowed per 100 possessions, but those teams have scored well at least.
The Timberwolves’ lack of efficiency on either end has them dead last in Net Rating. Their -9.3 mark is well above Sacramento’s -6.6.
Minnesota is coming off a split of its mini two-game series against the Spurs over the weekend. The Wolves lost the first game, 125-122 in overtime, but they got Karl-Anthony Towns back from a wrist injury that forced him to miss six games.
Towns was his old self in that defeat, scoring 25 points to go with 13 rebounds, four assists and three blocks.
The Minnesota star sat out the second game against San Antonio on Sunday night, a 96-88 win that the Timberwolves will hope is a turning-the-corner performance defensively.
A startling trend for Minnesota is that it entered Tuesday ranked eighth in Pace, according to NBA Advanced Stats. That shows that the Timberwolves need to slow down offensively, which they should do with Towns on the court.
Towns is expected to play against Memphis, and a matchup with Valanciunas is going to be a difficult test.
Even if Towns plays, the total presents value here because of the Grizzlies’ defensive prowess and offensive inefficiency. Memphis’ big Lithuanian will give Towns fits, and the Grizzlies’ guards will make it a difficult night for the likes of D’Angelo Russell, Malik Beasley and Anthony Edwards.
Since neither team is impressive and showing any sign of competing for a playoff spot this year, let’s just back neither to score a lot of points.
Pick: Under 219.5 (-105)