The Minnesota Timberwolves, who are in the midst of a five-game road trip, will take on the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday. Minnesota is 2-1 in their current away-from-home schedule and holds a 1-0 edge versus Portland in the season series. The Timberwolves will be playing the second leg of a back-to-back set but will be raring to stay unbeaten against the Blazers.
Unlike their surging opponents, the Blazers are struggling badly, particularly on offense. Only the injury-ravaged Memphis Grizzlies are worse than them in offensive rating. Portland’s offense will have to step up or the visitors are likely to run amok.
The Timberwolves are coming off an impressive 121-100 trampling of the LA Clippers less than 24 hours ago. Behind Rudy Gobert’s sparkling defense, Minnesota shut down LA’s high-powered offense. If Portland fails to execute their game plan, the Timberwolves will likely add the hosts to their list of victims.
Minnesota Timberwolves vs Portland Trail Blazers: Preview, prediction and betting tips
The Blazers will host the Timberwolves on Tuesday at the Moda Center in Portland, Oregon, starting at 10:00 p.m. ET. ROOT Sports Plus and Bally Sports North are the local networks that will cover the game. Streaming is also available by subscribing to the NBA League Pass.
Basketball fans can tune in to SiriusXM, Rip City Radio 620 and Wolves App/iHeart Radio to listen in to the action.
Moneyline: Timberwolves (-380) vs. Blazers (+300
Spread: Timberwolves (-8.5) vs. Blazers (+8.5)
Total (O/U): Timberwolves (o215.5 -110) vs. Blazers (u215.5 -110)
Minnesota Timberwolves vs Portland Trail Blazers: Game preview
The Timberwolves have led the NBA in defensive rating for most of the season. That defense bared its teeth against the LA Clippers who looked timid in the face of Minnesota’s suffocating coverage.
The Timberwolves don’t have to worry about Kawhi Leonard, Paul George and James Harden putting up buckets. They will have to contend with a Blazers team that has struggled to score. It might be quick work for the Timberwolves if the home team can’t get its act together.
Anfernee Simons will be available for the Blazers but Malcolm Brogdon and Shaedon Sharpe are out. Scoot Henderson is questionable and may not suit up for the team. Jerami Grant has been playing well but he can’t carry Portland on his own. The others will have to play well for them to have a chance of beating the Timberwolves.
Minnesota Timberwolves vs Portland Trail Blazers: Starting lineups
Anthony Edwards, Jaden McDaniels, Karl-Anthony Towns, Rudy Gobert, and Mike Conley will start for the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Jerami Grant, Deandre Ayton and Anfernee Simons are the only guaranteed starters. If Scoot Henderson is cleared, he is likely the fourth player in the rotation. Otherwise, Matisse Thybulle and Jabari Walker could open the game for coach Chauncey Billups.
Minnesota Timberwolves vs Portland Trail Blazers: Betting tips
Jerami Grant has a 21.5 over/under points prop, which is around his season average of 21.9 PPG. The veteran forward, though, has been on fire amid the injuries ravaging the Portland Trail Blazers. Over his last two games, he is averaging 36.5 points. Portland will desperately go to him for points which could push him to get past his points prop.
Anthony Edwards gets a 25.5 over/under points prop. Like Grant, “Ant-Man” has been superb at putting up the points. This month, he is averaging 29.5 points on 47.7% shooting, including 41.7% from deep. Portland’s lethargic defense could give him an advantage to score over his points prop.
Minnesota Timberwolves vs Portland Trail Blazers: Prediction
The Minnesota Timberwolves defense travels well even on the road. Despite playing the second game of a back-to-back set, they will unlikely have an off night on that end. Their ability to lock down opponents will likely be enough to contain the struggling Portland Trail Blazers. Minnesota could extend its winning streak to three and pile on Portland’s misery with an overwhelming win.