Northwest Division foes will collide when the Portland Trail Blazers (35-26) take on the Minnesota Timberwolves (38-26) at Moda Center at the Rose Quarter. Portland opened as a 4-point favorite, while the Over/Under (O/U) for the game has been set at 218 points. Tip-off is scheduled for 10:30 p.m. ET on Thursday, March 1, 2018.
Minnesota Timberwolves at Portland Trail Blazers ATS Preview
The last time the Timberwolves played, they won big over the Sacramento Kings, 118-100. Karl-Anthony Towns was the top scorer from either team with 26 points on 9-for-10 shooting. Minnesota played a perfect game. They had a fantastic free throw rate of 0.434 (above their season average of 0.226) and an offensive rebounding percentage of 25.8 (above their season average of 24.8). Sacramento was 0.143 and 18.6, respectively, for those same stats.
The Trail Blazers will look to keep it rolling after defeating the Sacramento Kings in their last game, 116-99. Portland rallied around Damian Lillard, who was the game’s leading scorer with 26 points on 11-for-19 shooting. The Trail Blazers held the Kings to an offensive rebounding percentage of 14.0 (below their season average of 21.6) and had an effective field goal percentage of 0.613 (above their season average of 0.511).
Minnesota should be expected to protect the ball well in this contest. Minnesota ranks first in the NBA at avoiding errors (turnover percentage of 12.0 percent), while Portland forces the second-fewest turnovers (12.7 percent).
Of Minnesota’s 64 games, 35 have finished over the projected point total, while 34 of Portland’s 61 games have finished under the O/U total. Both teams have very similar records straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS). The Timberwolves are 38-26 SU and 30-31-3 ATS, while the Trail Blazers are 35-26 SU and 30-25-6 ATS.
Both teams have had a player trending in the right direction over their last five games. For the Timberwolves, it’s been Jeff Teague, who has averaged 20.0 points, 7.0 assists and 1.4 steals, while the Trail Blazers have received great contributions from Lillard (39.4 points, 4.6 assists and 1.4 steals).
These two teams have met three times already this season, with the Timberwolves leading the series two games to one. In the most recent game, Lillard scored a game-high 31 points and the Trail Blazers defeated the Timberwolves 123-114, covering as 3.5-point favorites. He also had six assists. The two teams combined to put up 237 points, which was 26.5 points above the projected point total of 210.5 points. Portland had a better offensive rebounding percentage (17.6 vs. 13.9). Minnesota, on the other hand, had a better turnover percentage (6.0 vs. 9.9).
Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Portland Trail Blazers ATS Prediction
Free NBA Pick: SU Winner – Timberwolves, ATS Winner – Timberwolves, O/U – Over
- The Trail Blazers rank fourth in points allowed in the paint per game (41.8) while the Timberwolves rank 20th (45.7).
- Minnesota averages 14.2 second chance points per game, which ranks third in the league. Portland ranks 13th in second chance points allowed per game (12.1).
- Portland ranks fourth in three pointers allowed per game (26.6) while Minnesota ranks 19th (29.8).
- Portland averages 5.1 blocks per game, which ranks seventh in the NBA. Minnesota ranks 10th in blocks allowed per game (4.5).
- Minnesota is 14-16-2 ATS on the road with 17 overs and 15 unders.
- Portland is 13-13-3 ATS at home with 15 unders and 14 overs.
- Minnesota is 16-4 when they hold opponents under 100 points, while Portland is 19-5.
- When scoring over 100 points, the Timberwolves are 36-17 and the Trail Blazers are 30-13.
- The Timberwolves rank third in rebounds allowed per game (41.4) while the Trail Blazers rank 14th (42.9).
- Minnesota ranks fourth in steals per game (8.6) while Portland ranks 27th (7.0).
- The Timberwolves rank fourth in points off turnovers per game (18.2) while the Trail Blazers rank 26th (14.8).
- The Timberwolves rank 23rd in fast break points per game (9.6) while the Trail Blazers rank 29th (7.5).
- Portland ranks first in assists allowed per game (20.3) while Minnesota ranks 19th (23.9).
- Portland is 3-2 ATS with 3 overs and 2 unders in their last five games.
- Over their last five games, Minnesota is 2-3 ATS with 4 overs and 1 under.
- The Trail Blazers’ average margin of victory in their last five games has been 5.0, up from 1.6 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Timberwolves have scored an average of 113.8 points per game (3.9 above their season average) and allowed an average of 112.2 points per game (5.3 above their season average).