The Minnesota Timberwolves (10-16) will try to snap their eight-game losing streak when they challenge the Denver Nuggets (18-8) at Pepsi Center. The game starts at 9 p.m. ET on Friday, December 20, 2019, and will air on Altitude Sports & Entertainmnt.
Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Denver Nuggets Free Prediction
The Timberwolves are hoping for a better outcome after not being able to cover as 3-point favorites in their 107-99 loss to the New Orleans Pelicans in their last outing. The game’s total points (206) came in well under the projected point total of 230. New Orleans’ 26.2 offensive rebounding percentage was their largest strength over Minnesota, who had a rate of 21.4. The Pelicans’ mark was above their season average of 22.2. Andrew Wiggins was Minnesota’s leading scorer with 27 points on 9-for-23 shooting.
The last time the Nuggets played, they beat the Orlando Magic, 113-104, resulting in a push. The game’s combined points (217) were over the O/U total of 204.5. The Nuggets, who came into the game averaging an offensive rebounding percentage of 24.0, had an extraordinary mark of 34.1 and had a free throw rate of 0.262 (above their season average of 0.161). With 18 points, 12 assists and nine rebounds, Denver’s Nikola Jokic played well.
This is the second game of the season between these two teams. Karl-Anthony Towns scored a game-high 25 points in the first matchup, in which the Timberwolves lost 100-98 but covered as 4-point underdogs. The game finished with a total of 198 points, which was 20.5 points below the projected point total of 218.5 points. Denver’s effective field goal percentage was its biggest strength over Minnesota. The Nuggets had a rate of 0.441 while the Timberwolves posted a mark of 0.381.
Minnesota heads into the game with records of 10-16 straight up (SU) and 9-16-1 against the spread (ATS). Of the Timberwolves’ 26 games, 16 have gone over the total.
Denver has a respectable 18-8 SU record, but they are just 10-12-4 ATS. Contrary to Minnesota, games involving the Nuggets have typically gone under the total (69.2 percent).
From an effective field goal percentage perspective, Denver should have a noteworthy advantage. The Nuggets defense ranks fourth in effective field goal percentage allowed (0.496), while the Minnesota offense is ranked 22nd in effective field goal percentage (0.512). It will also be a tale of two paces as the fast-breaking Timberwolves rank first in possessions per game, while the slower-paced Nuggets rank 25th.
Minnesota Timberwolves at Denver Nuggets Odds Pick
Prediction: ATS Winner – Timberwolves, O/U – Over
On the road, Minnesota is 7-6 ATS with 9 overs and 4 unders.
At home, Denver is 6-7-2 ATS with 10 unders and 5 overs.
In games where they hold opponents below 100 points, Denver is 10-1 and Minnesota is 1-0.
The Nuggets are 16-4 when they score over 100 points, while the Timberwolves are 10-11.
Denver ranks third in second chance points allowed per game (11.2) while Minnesota ranks 28th (14.9).
The Timberwolves rank fifth in three pointers attempted per game (38.6) while the Nuggets rank 25th (30.3).
Denver ranks eighth in rebounds allowed per game (44.0) while Minnesota ranks 27th (47.1).
The Nuggets rank second in points off turnovers allowed per game (14.2) while the Timberwolves rank 19th (17.7).
Denver ranks fourth in assists per game (26.4) while Minnesota ranks 21st (22.8).
The Timberwolves rank fifth in blocks per game (6.0) while the Nuggets rank 17th (4.9).
Minnesota ranks sixth in points in the paint per game (50.4) while Denver ranks 15th in points allowed in the paint per game (48.5).
The Nuggets rank 22nd in fast break points per game (11.8) while the Timberwolves rank 28th (10.2).
In its last five contests, Minnesota is 0-5 ATS with 4 overs and 1 under.
Denver is 2-1-2 ATS with 3 overs and 2 unders over its last five games.
The Timberwolves’ average margin of defeat in their last five games has been 11.8, up from 3.5 for the season.
During their last five games, the Nuggets have scored an average of 108.0 points per game (1.2 above their season average) and allowed an average of 101.4 points per game (0.4 below their season average).