Timberwolves vs. 76ers Odds, Preview, Prediction: Health Gives Minnesota Advantage in Philly (November 19)
Stephen Maturen/Getty Images. Pictured: Karl-Anthony Towns #32 of the Minnesota Timberwolves.
- The Philadelphia 76ers host the Timberwolves for the first time this season on Saturday night.
- Minnesota is finishing up a road trip and Philadelphia is playing the second half of a back-to-back.
- Jacob McKenna previews the game and shares his best bet below.
Timberwolves vs. 76ers Odds
|Time||7:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
The Minnesota Timberwolves will travel to Philadelphia to take on the 76ers in the first meeting between the teams this season.
Minnesota enters this matchup on the back end of a four-game road trip, one which has seen the Timberwolves go 2-1 with wins against Cleveland and Orlando in their most recent games. Meanwhile, Philadelphia finds itself right in the middle of a five-game, during which the 76ers are 3-0.
Despite all the star power on both rosters, neither Minnesota nor Philadelphia has gotten off to a hot start this season. Will the 76ers be the team to turn things around and continue playing good basketball at home, or will we see Minnesota extend its win streak and steal one on the road?
The Minnesota Timberwolves made a massive trade in the offseason and acquired Rudy Gobert from the Jazz, a move many thought would propel Minnesota up the ranks in the Western Conference after it lost in the first round of the playoffs last season.
Surprisingly though, the addition of Gobert has yet to look like a move that has changed this Timberwolves team for the better.
Minnesota enters this matchup with an overall record of 7-8, which puts them in 10th place in the Western Conference at the time of this writing. The Timberwolves have been mediocre in almost every aspect of the game to begin the year, as evidenced by ranking 12th in Offensive Rating and 17th in Defensive Rating.
However, the Timberwolves have started to piece some things together over the past few days, especially on the offensive side of the ball.
In their most recent wins against the Cavaliers and Magic, we have seen Minnesota play great basketball. In that stretch, the Timberwolves posted an Offensive Rating of 127.5 and shot 54.1% from the floor (40% from behind the arc).
They haven't gotten off to a great start, but the Timberwolves are averaging 118.75 points per game in their past four games and have six guys on the roster averaging double-digit points per game. It looks like things are finally starting to click.
The injury bug has taken over the 76ers roster and is likely to be one of the larger factors in this game.
James Harden remains out as he takes care of a foot injury and his absence has been a massive blow to Philadelphia's offensive production. Prior to Harden's absence, the 76ers ranked fourth in the NBA in Offensive Rating at 115.6, but since Harden has been sidelined we have seen that rating fall to 105.0.
Additionally, Philadelphia is shooting just 27.6% from three since the Harden injury, and things might become even more difficult behind the arc thanks to more injuries.
Tobias Harris sat out Friday night's game against Milwaukee with a sudden hip injury. It is unclear how severe that injury is, but if Harris misses another game it means Philadelphia will be without a guy who is shooting 39.7% from three this season.
Tyrese Maxey was another addition to the injury report after he left Friday's game in the first half with a foot injury. Maxey is averaging 22.8 points per game this season and is shooting 41% from deep. When you add him to the injury report alongside Harden and Harris, the 76ers are all of a sudden very thin on the offensive end of the floor.
Given all of the injuries Philadelphia suddenly has on its plate, and the fact that the 76ers were in a battle on Friday against the Bucks, I think this is a game Minnesota can not only cover the spread, but win outright.
Even though Philadelphia appears to have turned the corner and won four of its past five games, the 76ers are stretched far too thin on offense.
Things don't get any easier in this matchup as Minnesota ranks fourth in the NBA in opponent field goal percentage (44.9%) and has had three days of rest since its last win.
This line is likely to shift a few points once the injury situation for Philadelphia becomes more clear, but getting Minnesota at +2.5 at the time of this writing is a great price for the much healthier and deeper team.
Pick: Timberwolves +2.5 (-110)