Minnesota Timberwolves (9-5; 7-6-1 ATS; 6-7 O/U) vs. Dallas Mavericks (2-13; 4-11 ATS; 6-8 O/U)
NBA: Friday, November 17, 2017 at 8:30pm EST
Line: Minnesota -6.5
The Minnesota Timberwolves will head to Dallas to take on the Mavericks Friday night from the American Airlines Center. The Timberwolves notched a 98-86 home win against the Spurs on Wednesday night, and the Mavericks dropped a 97-91 decision to the Spurs in their previous action. Minnesota recorded a 112-99 win over Dallas earlier this month.
Timberwolves’ Defense Shines in Win Over Spurs
The Minnesota Timberwolves played dazzling defense in their 98-86 home win over the Spurs on Wednesday night. The Timberwolves posted a 45% clip from the field and went a terrific 9 for 18 from beyond the arc, while holding the Spurs to 41% shooting. Karl-Anthony Towns was stellar, dropping 26 points on 10 for 18 shooting and collected 16 rebounds. The seven-foot center has now recorded a double-double in four consecutive games and is averaging a team-leading 21.5 points and 11.6 boards per game. Towns notched 31 points and 12 rebounds in the Timberwolves win over the Mavericks earlier this month and is tied for second in the NBA with 11 double-doubles. Andrew Wiggins was quiet in the win on Wednesday night, going 4 for 11 from the field for 11 points. The fourth-year small forward has slowed down a bit, scoring 11 points in two straight games, and is second in team scoring with 18.9 points per game.
The Timberwolves are hot, winning seven out of their last nine games led by their potent offense, however, they do need to improve on their defensive play. They are 4-4 on the road this season and are averaging 108 points per game, good for 10th in the NBA. Minnesota is allowing an average of 108.9 points, positioning them 25th overall.
Smith Jr. Shines in Mavericks Loss
The Dallas Mavericks scoring woes continued in their 97-91 home loss to the Spurs on Tuesday night. The Mavericks only shot 40.7% on the night and were out-rebounded 54-47. Dennis Smith Jr. was outstanding in the loss, sinking a season-high 27 points along with six rebounds. The 2017 ninth overall pick is off to a tremendous start to his NBA career, averaging 15.8 points and a team-high 4.7 assists per game, and has been a bright spot in a disastrous start to the Mavs season. Smith Jr. scored 18 points on 7 for 16 shooting in the Mavericks 112-99 loss to the Timberwolves earlier this month. Mavericks’ leading scorer Harrison Barnes was not sharp on Wednesday night, going 5 for 16 from the field for a total of 16 points. The 25-year old small forward is averaging a solid 21.3 points this month, and is posting an average of 18.8 points and 7.1 rebounds per game on the season.
The Mavericks have lost three consecutive games and nine out of their last ten games as scoring points continues to be an issue with a lack of depth. They own a poor 1-7 road record. Dallas is only averaging 98.9 points, ranking them down at 27th in the NBA. They are allowing an average of 107 points, positioning them 19th overall.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are:
- 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games playing on one day of rest.
- the favorite is 16-5 ATS in the last 21 meetings between Minnesota and Dallas.
- 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a straight up win.
The Dallas Mavericks are:
- 2-8 ATS in their last 10 home games.
- 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games against the Western Conference.
- 2-8 ATS in their last 10 games following an ATS win.
I am taking the Timberwolves in this contest. The Timberwolves just limited two low-scoring teams in the Jazz and Spurs to 98 and 86 points respectively in their last two games, so I am confident they can handle the Mavericks who are only averaging 98.9 points. Furthermore, Karl-Anthony Towns will be a force down low and the Timberwolves deep lineup will be tough for the Mavericks to handle as opponents are shooting 47% against Dallas. Minnesota already beat the Mavericks 112-99 earlier this month, and I am confident siding with them.