Venue: Smoothie King Center
Home: New Orleans Pelicans
Away: Minnesota Timberwolves
23.01.2023, @ 04:00 AM (+03:00 UTC)
The NBA Regular Season has been going on and w have already seen a big trade being pulled. The Wizards sent their highly-rated Forward Rui Hachimura to the Lakers in exchange for Kendrick Nunn and some draft picks. There are teams that are in desperate need of some depth so the trend of the trades will only pick up from here. One of those teams, the Minnesota Timberwolves will take on the New Orleans Pelicans.Receive Your Welcome Bonus!
The Timberwolves come into the game after an unprecedented 114:119 loss against the Houston Rockets despite a 31 points performance by Anthony Edwards. This loss broke a two-game winning streak and now the team has lost three of the last five games. Because of their unsteady play, the Wolves have just 24 wins and 25 losses, and they have struggled to go over the 50% win mark for most of the season now.
Their perimeter defense has haunted them all season and on average they have given up around 37.5%(second worst out of 30 teams). They have also been outrebounded regularly despite having an elite rebounder Rudy Gobert. Not having Karl Anthony-Towns has hurt but these issues were lingering even when the versatile big was active. Edwards has played well, McDaniels is a terrific defender, Kyle Anderson has been an all-around maestro, and D’Angelo has shot well, but overall, the Timberwolves’ defense has been a big issue.
New Orleans Pelicans
The Pelicans enter the game after losing 98:99 against the Denver Nuggets despite a 20 points performance by CJ McCollum. Once again, the Pels fought hard against a tough team but fell short, and now they have dropped five games in a row, which have brought them to 26 wins and 22 losses. Their record still looks more than decent because they played some great basketball when Zion Williamson was active but not having him has hurt their balance.
The balance has been further unsettled due to the absence of Brandon Ingram, who has missed more than 30 games. The Pels’ offense has struggled massively and they have scored 103 or lower in four of the last five games. This doesn’t mean that they haven’t fought hard but the lack of offensive ammo has hurt them in close games. The comfort zone is getting slimmer now and once again, injuries to Zion keep haunting the team’s performance. The good news is that Ingram can return here.
- Pelicans: OUT: Zion Williamson, Naji Marshall. PROBABLE: Brandon Ingram;
- Timberwolves: OUT: Jordan McLaughlin, Karl Anthony-Towns, Taurean Prince. Game-Time Decision: Rudy Gobert.
Expert Betting Tips
The Pels played last night and gave it their all in the loss to the Nuggets. The potential return of Ingram is slated to bolster the team combination and take the pressure away from CJ and Valanciunas. Meanwhile, the Wolves rely upon Edwards and Russell to bring most of the offense so they have their own scoring chops. This is not an easy one to predict but I “lean” towards the Wolves. I predict a scoreline of 118:112 in favor of Minnesota.