The Minnesota Timberwolves return home to take on the Pacers in Monday night NBA action. Indiana will be making their second road trip on the young season and have yet to win a contest there. The T-Wolves, meanwhile, are coming off of a road loss to Dallas and are still winless away from home but looking to improve to in the 2018-19 campaign . . .
— Timberwolves (@Timberwolves) October 21, 2018
The franchises have been colliding on the hardwood since Minnesota first joined the league in 1989, but the Pacers lead the all-time series 36-20 and have won four straight contests in Minneapolis.
T-Wolves Wanting Home Win vs. Pacers
While the teams have split the series in each of the past three seasons, it has been the road team that keeps winning the games, and Indiana will actually enter this one looking for their fifth straight win in the “Land of 10,000 Lakes.” If they can manage to do it, it will drop Minnesota to 1-3 on the young season, not the place you want to be when you have failed to reach the postseason since 2004.
Offense has not been an issue for this side but defensively they are allowing 125 points per contest and in their most recent outing they gave up 140 points in their four-point setback against the Mavericks. The defense was particularly poor in the final quarter when it allowed the Mavs to score 43 points and the Wolves were outrebounded on the offensive boards 15-6. Jimmy Butler, who has been a generally disappointing addition to the team, rested in Saturday night’s loss but is expected to get the start again on Monday night at home. He requested to be traded before the season began, but did drop 33 points on the Cavaliers on Friday night. Rookie Josh Okogie had to step up his game and show what he had in 29 minutes of play. He scored six point, had five boards, and two assists. Karl Anthony-Towns dropped in 31 points on 9-of-16 shooting. Andrew Wiggins is scoring 20.3 points per game to this point, but only scored 10.5 ppg last season against Indiana.
Pacers Playing some Ball
After surprising everyone and taking LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers to the brink in the first round of last season’s Eastern Conference playoffs, Indiana came into this campaign with high expectations. So far, so good, as the team has looked solid in two of their three contests, but the loss came in their only road appearance, which they will be on again on Monday night. That setback came up in the frozen tundra of Milwaukee, a region they will be returning to this time around when they travel to Minneapolis, so beating Minnesota on the road may be a tall task for the Pacers. Of course, if they manage to do so, it will be their fifth straight time accomplishing the feat.
Last time out they won comfortably over the Nets, 132-112 as Victor Oladipo scored 25 points. The last time he visited Minnesota he dropped 28 points on the T-Wolves. Power forward Myles Turner’s minutes have been going up this season and should continues to do so as the team could be without power forwards Domantas Sabonis (knee) and T.J. Leaf (ankle) for this one. Both players were unable to go Saturday night against Brooklyn.
- 0-5 ATS in their last 5 after allowing 100 points or more in their previous game.
- 0-5 ATS in their last 5 when their opponent scores 100 points or more in their previous game.
- 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games overall.
- 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 vs. Eastern Conference.
- 0-5 ATS in their last 5 when their opponent allows 100 points or more in their previous game.
- 4-0 ATS in their last 4 vs. Western Conference.
- 5-1 ATS in their last 6 road games.
- 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall.
- 14-3 ATS in their last 17 Monday games.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Minnesota is the favorite in this one and they certainly do play in the stronger of the two conferences in the NBA, but Indiana should be a contender in theirs and the T-Wolves wil not be. Look for the Pacers to coninute thier win streak in the target center and the fact that they are getting points in this one is all the more reason to jump on board. Minnesota has the potential to be a decent basketball team this season, but they are simply not there as of yet.
Prediction: Pick: Pacers -2.5
Full-Game Total Pick
Something is just off with this total. The Timberwolves scored 136 points in their last outing . . . and they allowed even more than that! Keep in mind they were not even home for that. The Pacers have not been a slouch offensively and scored 130 points the last time they played in the Target Center. The over has hit in the last six Minnesota games and there is no reason to thin that trend will not continue here.
Prediction: Over 222.5