The Sacramento Kings (6-8 SU, 7-7 ATS) will travel to Minnesota to battle the Timberwolves (4-9 SU, 4-9 ATS) at the Target Center Wednesday Night.
Both teams are coming into this game scuffling. The Kings had dropped four straight before beating the Pistons by 22 on the road Monday. The Wolves have also lost 4 of their last 5, with their lone win being a 24 point blowout win against the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on November 12th.
So, will the Kings be able to notch back-to-back wins or will the Timberwolves right the ship?
Kings vs Timberwolves Betting Odds and Lines
ATS: Timberwolves -2.5
Moneyline: MIN -135 / SAC +115
Kings vs Timberwolves Injury Report
For the Timberwolves, both Naz Reid and Josh Okogie are questionable. Reid, who is battling a foot injury, expects to play. Okogie, dealing with a back ailment, is more questionable.
The Kings are fully healthy for this matchup with no injury designations.
Kings vs Timberwolves Preview
The Kings come into this game as generically middle-of-the-pack. According to Cleaning the Glass, they are 14th in points per 100 possessions, 16th in effective field goal % and 17th in offensive rebound %. They are, though, 5th in the NBA in Offensive Rating, according to NBA Advanced Stats. Pacing the Kings this season has been Harrison Barnes averaging 20.9 PPG, 8.1 RPG and 2.3 APG and Richuan Holmes averaging 14.4 PPG 10.9 RPG to go along with a block per game. D’Aaron Fox also leads the team in assists per game with 6.3.
Where the Kings struggle is on the defensive end of the floor. They are 21st in the NBA in defensive rating, according to NBA Advanced Stats. They force the fourth lowest turnovers and allow the fourth most offensive rebounds, according to Cleaning the Glass.
The Timberwolves, after some high hopes heading into the season, have disappointed to date for the most part. While they have played many good teams close and have suffered some late losses, they still are leaving a lot to be desired. According to NBA Advanced Stats they rank 26th in offensive rating and 13th in defensive rating. The biggest bright spot for the Timberwolves has been Karl-Anthony Towns, who is averaging 23.2 PPG, 9.6 RBG and 3.3 APG on 49% shooting from the field. Anthony Edwards is also continuing to come into his own, averaging 22.9 PPG, 6.8 RPG and 3.5 APG.
The only player making shots on the Timberwolves is Karl-Anthony Towns. And yet his usage has regularly been behind several teammates. Maybe the Wolves found something to build on against Phoenix https://t.co/fPEiUgi2fE
— Jon Krawczynski (@JonKrawczynski) November 17, 2021
Where they have excelled offensively thus far is in offensive rebounding, ranking 4th in the league in that category. But in points per possession, effective field goal %, Turnover % and free throw rate they are at the bottom of the league, according to Cleaning the Glass.
Defensively, they are 12th in points per 100 possessions, 15th in effective field goal %, and the best team in the NBA at creating turnovers. However, they allow the most offensive rebounds per game in the NBA as well as allow the most free throws. Which, for a team that likes to create havoc and try to force turnovers, isn’t too surprising.
Kings vs Timberwolves Prediction
The total for this game opened at 224.5 and has since been steamed all the way up to 227. That’s not too surprising given that these two teams rank 8th and 9th in Pace so far this year. But while these two teams do tend to play fast, going against the steam here for a lean on the under isn’t a bad play. The over is 1-7 for the Timberwolves at home this season, and the Timberwolves are one of the worst shooting teams in the NBA.
The stronger play here, though, is on the Kings to cover the 2.5 point spread. The Timberwolves have been a darling for bettors early this season, but have continued to burn backers even when they are seemingly in games the entire way. According to Dunks and Threes, they are 25th in the NBA in Adjusted Net Rating. The Kings, on the other hand, are 13th in the NBA in Adjusted Net Rating.
It’s also worth noting the reverse line movement for this game. The Kings opened as 3 point underdogs but have moved to 2.5 point underdogs despite more of the bets being on the Timberwolves. 39% of the bets are on the Kings, but so too is 60% of the money. Look for the Kings to end their road trip with their second straight win while the Timberwolves fall short on the front end of a back-to-back. While the Kings may win this game outright, it’s worth getting the +2.5 while it’s still available.
Source: Basketball Insider