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|Game Date & Time||Fri Apr 29th, 9 p.m. ET|
Man, what a fun series this one is. The Grizzlies had a thrilling game 5 victory in the final seconds thanks to a Ja Morant layup to take the 3-2 lead. Now, we head back to Minnesota for game 6 to see if the Timberwolves can save their season. This game is being played on Friday, April 29th at 9 p.m. ET.
This game figures to be a tight one, with the Grizzlies as slight favorites here. The spread is Grizzlies -1.5, with the total at 229.
This is turning out to be the most fun series of the first round, by far. If only the Timberwolves could hold on to massive leads, they would have won the series in 5.
That’s twice now the Timberwolves have been up double digits heading into the 4th quarter and ended up losing the game. They were both gut-wrenching in their own way, with game 5 being a kick in the teeth because they tied it up with 3 seconds left, only to watch Ja win it at the buzzer.
The Grizzlies scored 37 points in the 4th quarter, outscoring the Timberwolves by 13 and winning by 2. Another devastating loss by the ‘TWolves, who already blew two 20 point leads in a loss in game 3.
Karl-Anthony Towns, of course, famously gave the Grizzlies crowd the “shh” motion as the Timberwolves were leading in the 4th. Tough look for KAT, who at least didn’t implode in game 5 like he did in game 3.
I’ve probably gone too far without mentioning more about Ja, by the way. He had a rough start to the game, with only 6 points in the 1st half. He added another 6 in the 3rd quarter before absolutely exploding in the 4th.
Ja had 18 points in the 4th quarter alone, scoring the last 13 points (!!) for the Grizzlies to win the game. Ja was frustratingly passive and not aggressive in the first 3 quarters, before quickly taking the game over in the final frame.
Once again, it was Desmond Bane who kept the Grizzlies afloat for the first 3 quarters, scoring 25 points on 3-8 shooting from deep.
To give credit for the Timberwolves, the last time they had a series-altering blown lead, they came back the next game and won a close game at home.
Looking at game 6, that is what I expect to happen again. I don’t get the same impression from the Timberwolves that I do from the Sixers and Jazz, both of whom look like they are ready to be put down.
This series feels like a 7 game series, and I like the Timberwolves to win game 6. I locked this in on FanDuel.
Timberwolves moneyline | +102 at FanDuel.
My prediction is that the Timberwolves take this one at home, winning 119-115.
|Timberwolves/Grizzlies Game Total||233|
|Game Date & Time||Tue Apr 26th, 7:30 p.m. ET|
What a fun series this is turning out to be. The series is now 2-2 after both teams split their home games, as we head back to Memphis for game 5. This game is being played on Tuesday, April 26th, at 7:30 p.m. ET.
Now that the Grizzlies are back at home, they are once again pretty heavy favorites. They are currently 6.5 point favorites, with the over/under at 233.
Major props to the Timberwolves, who had a gut-wrenching loss in game 3 to come back and win in game 4. It was especially a bounce back game for Karl-Anthony Towns, who finished with 33 points and 14 rebounds after a horrendous showing in game 3.
He had 14 points in the 4th quarter alone, including 2 huge 3-pointers, and the final 2 free throws at the end to seal the victory.
The Timberwolves also had a good showing from Anthony Edwards, who had 24 points on 4 made 3-pointers. There was concern over Edwards, who left the game with a knee injury in the 1st half, only to return and look healthy.
Heading into game 4, there was the question of how this young team that hadn’t been through any playoff battles before would respond to such a disheartening loss in game 3, so you have to give this team credit for responding with a win in game 4.
On the Grizzlies side, they got another huge performance from Desmond Bane. That is now two monster performances in a row, which has been necessary for a Grizzlies team that hasn’t gotten the scoring output from Ja Morant in the last two games.
He did had 14 assists in game 4, but he only had 11 points on 4 of 13 shooting. This was after only scoring 16 in game 3 on 5 of 18 shooting. Must be nice that the Grizzlies have another young possible superstar to rely on, but they are going to need Morant to step up if they want to make a run in these playoffs or even to beat the Timberwolves.
At some point Bane is going to slow down, presumably, after he has now hit a combined 15 3-pointers in the last two games. Once this happens, it will be interesting to see what the Grizzlies do from there.
Regarding the betting plays for game 5, I decided to sit out a play on the spread. I didn’t find any value on the spread, instead taking the total to go under again. I bet under 233 on WynnBET.
This series has had an interesting ping-pong of 2 games being pretty high scoring (235+) with two games being rock fights. The Timberwolves went two straight games scoring below 100 points before exploding in game 4.
With the series going back to Memphis, I don’t expect another offensive performance to this level from the Timberwolves. As a team they have struggled with consistency, led, of course, by KAT.
He had 29 points in game 1, then followed that up with a 15 and 8 point performance in games 2 and 3, respectably, before then putting up 33 in game 4. The guess here is that he, along with the ‘TWolves offense as a whole, continue their inconsistent trend and struggle to put up points in game 5.
My official NBA betting pick for this game is to take the game total to go under 233. I bet this at -108 odds at WynnBET Sportsbook.
My prediction is that the Grizzlies win this game 104-99.
|Minnesota Timberwolves Moneyline||+123|
|Memphis Grizzlies Moneyline||-137|
|Minnesota Timberwolves Spread||+2.5|
|Memphis Grizzlies Spread||-2.5|
|Timberwolves/Grizzlies Game Total||232.5|
|Game Date & Time||Sat Apr 23rd, 10PM ET|
After a devastating loss in game 3, the Timberwolves are now down 2-1, with one more game in Minnesota for game 4. This game is being played on Saturday April 23rd at 10PM ET.
Despite blowing multiple 20 point leads in game 3, the Timberwolves are only slight underdogs as the home team in game 4. The point spread is currently Grizzlies -2.5, with the over/under still at the high total of 232.5.
What a tough, tough L the Timberwolves took in game 3, and what a whirlwind of a game that was. Twice the Timberwolves built a 20+ lead, only to blow it both times.
The Timberwolves were up by 26 points 3 minutes into the 2nd quarter, but then blew that lead and were only up by 7 at halftime.
Then, in the third quarter, the ‘TWolves once again got out to a huge lead, this time by as much as 21, only for the Grizzlies to tie it up with 8:30 left in the 4th quarter. The game was pretty much over from there.
It was very Doc Rivers led Clippers the way in which the Timberwolves imploded and had absolutely no idea what to do to stop the bleeding. It was clear that even head coach Chris Finch was rattled by the moment. The clearest example of this is he didn’t call a single timeout during the Grizzlies run in the 2nd half, which is almost unheard of.
Game 3 was another example of Karl-Anthony Towns shrinking in the moment, and proving that if you are physical with him he has the tendency to shut down. He took only 4 shots the entire game, finishing with a measly 8 points and 5 rebounds. He also had 5 fouls, unable to have any sort of positive impact on the defensive end.
On the Grizzlies end, it’s hard not to be impressed with this young squad that seems to have maturity beyond its years. For every game in which a team blows a lead, there has to be a team that comes back.
While I do admit that this specific situation had more to do with the Timberwolves imploding than anything specific the Grizzlies did, it’s still impressive to watch a young team in the playoffs come back from two separate 20 point deficits.
In game 3 it was the heroics of Desmond Bane that led the comeback. He finished the game with a game-high 26 points on 7 made 3’s. He was the hero, as Ja struggled, shooting only 5-18 from the field.
For game 4 betting value, I actually like the Timberwolves to bounce back and win as the home underdog in this spot.
So, with all that said, I ended up taking the Timberwolves moneyline at +130 on Caesars Sportsbook. I don’t have the expectation that they are going to lay down and die, and I’m not quite ready to give them the full Utah Jazz treatment in that they have just totally given up on the season and are getting ready for their off-season vacations.
They are a young team that has some prideful players in Patrick Beverly and Anthony Edwards. I expect the Timberwolves to come out with energy and focus, the full length of the game this time.
My official NBA betting pick for this game is to take the Timberwolves moneyline. I bet this at +130 odds on Caesars Sportsbook.
My prediction for this game is that the Timberwolves win 120-119.
|Minnesota Timberwolves Moneyline||+104|
|Memphis Grizzlies Moneyline||-114|
|Minnesota Timberwolves Spread||+1.5|
|Memphis Grizzlies Spread||-1.5|
|Timberwolves/Grizzlies Game Total||237|
|Game Date & Time||Thu Apr 21st, 7:30PM ET|
The Grizzlies evened up the series with a dominant showing in game 2 of their playoff matchup with the Minnesota Timberwolves. For game 3, we head north to Minnesota where the ‘Twolves will host Memphis. This game is being played on Thursday, April 21st at 7:30PM ET.
The Grizzlies flat out dominated the Timberwolves in game 2. The final score was Grizzlies by 28, and they led by as many as 32. The impressive part of the Grizzlies victory was how balanced their scoring approach was.
Their leading scorer was Ja Morant, with only 23 points. They scored 124 points total, led by 7 total players that scored in the double figures. They looked great, and if they can continue to be this balanced and efficient then they are going to be a tough out the rest of the playoffs.
The 4-7 shooting from deep from Jaren Jackson Jr is a great sign for these young Grizzlies. Jackson Jr has been great all year on defense, but his jump-shot failed him the past two seasons. He shot all the way up to 39.4% from deep in 2019, but the past two seasons he has only averaged 28.3% and 31.9% from 3, respectively.
So, if he is able to find his stroke, coupled with the leap that Ja took, the Grizzlies could win this series in 5.
But, with that said, the Timberwolves going back home to Minnesota have something to say about that. Their top 3 struggled mightily in game 2, with Anthony Edwards scoring 20 points, Karl-Anthony Towns scoring 15, and D’Angelo Russel only 11.
They are going to need these 3 to step up if they want to bounce back in game 3.
I do think the Timberwolves get an advantage going home, but I think the line moving all the way down to -1.5, or -1 on FanDuel, is too much of a home court advantage. So, I love the value of getting the Grizzlies to cover here.
The OddsJam Line, along with most other books, price this spread at either -1.5 or -2. So, getting the Grizzlies down to -1 does represent some value.
Of course the Timberwolves are going to get some advantage going back home, but this Grizzlies team is tough, and has passed every test so far. I don’t think they have the mental makeup that will be rattled in a hostile environment.
My favorite play in this game, though, is again riding with the under. I got it at under 237.5 on BetRivers Sportsbook.
I took the inflated total to go under in game 2, and I’m once again riding with it in game 3.
The Timberwolves only scored 96 points in game 2, while the Grizzlies are unlikely to get type of shooting from Jaren Jackson Jr, and also that much of a balanced scoring attack.
The more likely scenario is the Grizzlies scoring total comes down, while the Timberwolves goes up a little bit, meeting somewhere in the middle of the 220 points scored in game 2.
My official NBA betting picks is to take the Grizzlies -1. I got this on FanDuel Sportsbook at -110 odds.
My favorite pick for this game, though, is to take the under. I got under 237.5 at +100 odds on BetRivers Sportsbook.
My prediction for this game is that the Grizzlies win 115-112.
|Memphis Grizzlies Moneyline||-279|
|Minnesota Timberwolves Moneyline||+242|
|Memphis Grizzlies Spread||-6.5|
|Minnesota Timberwolves Spread||+6.5|
|Grizzlies/Timberwolves Game Total||240.5|
|Game Date & Time||Tue Apr 19th, 8:30PM ET|
After a Timberwolves upset victory over the Grizzlies in game 1, we stay in Memphis for game 2. This game is being played on Tuesday, April 19th at 8:30PM ET.
Even with the game 1 loss, the Grizzlies are still pretty decent favorites here. They are favored by 6.5 points, with the total at 240.5.
Despite the Grizzlies being the 2 seed and the Timberwolves being the 7 seed, the game 1 victory of the ‘TWolves did not look like a total fluke. They won by 13, led by huge performances from Anthony Edwards and Karl-Anthony Towns. Those two young studs popping off seems like a replicable formula for the Timberwolves.
The Grizzlies did end the regular season tied for 5th in the NBA in defensive Net Rating, though, so they should figure to do a better job in game 2. They were a little uncharacteristic in allowing 130 total points in game 1.
Another aspect of game 1 where the Grizzlies can look and say they should do better next time is shooting from deep. They only shot 25% on 7-27 shooting from beyond the arc.
Overall, I struggled with my official prediction in terms of moneyline/spread bet. While I do think the Grizzlies win and the Timberwolves cover, there wasn’t a play there that I liked.
Instead, I found a Positive Expected Value bet on the under.
The Oddsjam Line prices this game 2 total at 240.5 at roughly even money. Thanks to line shopping on the OddsJam NBA odds page, I was able to get this total at a full point higher, 241.5, but only -108 odds on WynnBET.
The scoring output in game 1 was pretty high (130-117), and that score was only 7 points higher than this total. These were two solid defensive teams in the regular season, and playoff basketball tends to lend itself to lower point totals because teams play harder on defense.
So, I love getting the under here. The total is so high that the two teams could have solid offensive performances and still go under.
I also have a player prop for this game that I like a lot too. I am once again fading Ja Morant’s 3-point total, and taking him to go under 1.5 made 3-pointers on DraftKings.
As incredible as Ja was this season, his 3-point shot never came along as far as the rest of his game did. I bet this in game 1 and it hit, so I’m taking it yet again.
My official NBA betting picks for this game is to take the game total going under. I got it at under 241.5 at -108 odds WynnBET Sportsbook.
As for my player prop, I took Ja Morant to go under 1.5 made 3-pointers. This was bet on DraftKings Sportsbook at +110 odds.
My prediction is that the Grizzlies are going to win this game
|Memphis Grizzlies Moneyline||-251|
|Minnesota Timberwolves Moneyline||+219|
|Memphis Grizzlies Spread||-6|
|Minnesota Timberwolves Spread||+6|
|Grizzlies/Timberwolves Game Total||236.5|
|Game Date & Time||Sat Apr 16th, 3:30PM ET|
You will see the full series preview and analysis below, so I’ll keep the game preview itself relatively short. I’ll provide my official prediction, and one player prop as well.
As the 2 seed and the home team here, it isn’t a surprise to see the Grizzlies pretty decent favorites. The point spread is currently Grizzlies -6, according to the OddsJam Perfect Line, with the over/under set at 236.5.
For game 1 of this series, I actually like the Timberwolves to cover. With the Grizzlies having the entire week off and the ‘TWolves having already played some semblance of playoff basketball in their play-in victory against the Clippers, one could expect some rust from the Grizzlies.
I do think the Grizzlies are the better team, of course, but for one game I like the Timberwolves spread. Thanks to line shopping using OddsJam, I was able to get them at +7.5 on BetRivers.
As for the Positive EV player prop, I went with Ja Morant to go under 1.5 made 3-pointers. As incredible as Ja has been this year, he still hasn’t quite found his 3-point rhythm.
On the season Ja only shot 34.4% from 3, and in his last 6 games he has gone under 4 times, hitting no 3’s in three of those games as well.
My official NBA betting picks for this game is to take the Timberwolves +7.5. I got this at -115 on BetRivers Sportsbook.
My favorite player prop for this game is to take Ja Morant to go under 1.5 made 3-pointers. This was bet at +106 odds on FanDuel Sportsbook.
My prediction for this game is that the Grizzlies are going to win 121-119.
|Memphis Grizzlies Series Odds||-360|
|Minnesota Timberwolves Series Odds||+280|
|Memphis Grizzlies Game Spread||-1.5|
|Minnesota Timberwolves Game Spread||+1.5|
|Projected Game Total: 5 Games||+220|
In this article, we will be previewing the series between the 2 seed Memphis Grizzlies and the 7 seed Minnesota Timberwolves. As the higher seed, the Grizzlies will have the home-court advantage here.
Boy oh boy, what a fun series this is going to be. Two young teams that love to talk trash, play a fun style on offense, but are surprisingly good on defense too.
The odds reflect that the Grizzlies should win this series with relative ease. The most likely scenario, according to Caesars Sportsbook, is that the Grizzlies win 4-1.
I’m not so sure that I entirely agree that it will be a Grizzlies blowout, but let’s get into it.
If you take away the young age of the Grizzlies and just look at the analytics themselves, everything screams championship contender.
MVP candidate and legitimate superstar? Check. Top 10 in offensive and defensive efficiency? Check. Playoff experience? Check.
Despite being one of the youngest teams in the NBA, this Grizzlies team is legit. Let’s start with Ja Morant, who is their best player and spiritual leader for the Grizzlies.
Ja is awesome. He won the rookie of the year two seasons ago, showed promising improvement in his 2nd year, and then absolutely exploded in what is now his 3rd year in the NBA.
His scoring went from 19.4 points per game last year all the way up to 27.4 this year. He was a legitimate MVP candidate before two separate knee injuries caused him to miss some time.
Luckily, neither injury was too serious, and he has since recovered from this latest one. His health should not be an issue moving forward, unless something new pops up.
Surrounding Ja is still young but also still exciting talent, headlined by Jaren Jackson Jr, and Desmond Bane.
Starting with Jaren, he has had a disappointing shooting season, but has been stellar on defense. His height, length, and athleticism enables him to realistically, not theoretically, guard positions 1-5.
No player has surprised as much as Bane, though, the 2nd year player out of TCU. Coming out of college Bane was categorized as a 3-point shooter without much else to his game. Well, he has wildly surpassed those expectations in just his 2nd year.
He is still a great shooter, but he has been much better than advertised as a facilitator and balanced scorer in general. He’s much more than just a shooter.
This Grizzlies team is just so fun to root for because not only are they exciting, but they play with an energy and effort that is infectious.
The Timberwolves, meanwhile, are another great story this year. After over a decade and a half of being at the bottom of the league, the ‘TWolves are legitimately good with a bright future.
Overall, it’s hard not to be impressed with the Timberwolves. Even though they are the 7 seed in the West, they finished with the 10th best Net Rating in the entire NBA, finishing over teams such as the Nuggets, Raptors, and Nets.
The really surprising part is how well they performed defensively, finishing 13th in the NBA in defensive Net Rating. 13th might not seem great upon first glance, but considering they had the 3rd worst defense in the NBA last year, 13th is a remarkable improvement.
They’ve never had trouble scoring the ball, led by offensive dynamo Karl-Anthony Towns, but the improvement on defense is what led to the real change in Minnesota.
Part of their defensive improvement came from roster additions, most notably Patrick Beverly. Wherever Beverly goes, he brings a tenacious attitude that rubs off on his teammates. Teammate Jarred Vanderbilt has also taken a step up defensively.
Outside of Towns they have 2nd year stud Anthony Edwards, who followed up a promising rookie season with a great second year in the NBA. He averaged over 21 points per game, and shot 36% from 3. Despite being the 7 seed, the ‘TWolves are not short of talent and won’t be an easy out.
Much was made of the play-in game specifically, a game in which the Timberwolves celebrated like they just won game 7 of the finals, but also how much better they played when KAT fouled out.
With that said, I don’t think there is any scenario in which the Timberwolves are better with Karl-Anthony Towns out. The more likely scenario is that it was just a bad game.
I also don’t think the Timberwolves won’t take this series seriously after their celebration after beating the Clippers.
What I do think, though, is that the Grizzlies are just the better team. I struggled with my official pick here, but ended up settling on a smaller bet on the Grizzlies winning 4-2. The best odds I found this on was DraftKings at +370.
When the Timberwolves game first ended I was ready to predict this to be a 7 game series, but the more research I did the more I started leaning towards the Grizzlies in 5. So, I decided to split the difference and take the Grizzlies in 6.
I do think the individual games are going to be close, and in general is going to be a hard fought series. But, overall I just think this Grizzlies team is better and better coached.
My official NBA betting pick for this series is to take the Grizzlies to win 4-2. I bet this on DraftKings Sportsbook at +370 odds.
My prediction for this series is that the Grizzlies are going to win in 6 games. You can bet this series to be a 6 game series at +230 odds on Caesars Sportsbook.