The Los Angeles Clippers will host the Minnesota Timberwolves late Tuesday night. Last season the Clippers took two out of the three head-to-head matchups both straight up and against the spread. The Timberwolves did take the most recent meeting 142-115 as a 10-point home dog on February 8.
Timberwolves without their best player
The Minnesota Timberwolves are off to a 2-1 start. After opening up the season with a 111-101 win as a 5.5 point home favorite against Detroit, the Timberwolves upset Utah 116-111 as a nine-point road dog on Saturday and lost to the Lakers 127-91 on Sunday as a 10.5 point road dog.
On the young season, Minnesota is averaging 106 points per game and allowing 113. The Timberwolves are first in the NBA with 13.7 offensive rebounds per game. Minnesota has had a different leading scorer lead the way in each game so far this season, with Karl-Anthony Towns averaging 19 points and 11.5 rebounds in both of the team’s wins. Towns did not play against the Lakers and is currently out indefinitely with a dislocated left wrist. In Towns’ absence, three guards, Malik Beasley (16.3 ppg), Anthony Edwards (16 ppg), and D’Angelo Russell (15.7 ppg), lead the team offensively. Edwards had a team-high 15 points off the bench in the loss to the Lakers. As a team, the Timberwolves struggled all around in their loss to the Lakers, shooting 36.9% from the floor and 17.1% from three-point range,
Clippers coming off of historic embarrassment
The Los Angeles Clippers opened up the season with two impressive road victories, defeating the defending World Champion Los Angeles Lakers 116-109 as a two-point dog and the Denver Nuggets 121-108 as a 3.5 point favorite. Paul George led the team in scoring in each of the first two games, but Kawhi Leonard also played a huge role and averaged 23.5 points in the victories. On Sunday, the Clippers hosted Dallas, but Leonard did not play due to suffering a facial laceration, and the results were tragic.The Dallas Mavericks jumped out to the largest half time lead in NBA history, holding a 77-27 first-half advantage over the Clippers. The Clippers shot 34.2% (26 of 76) for the game and just 12.1% (4 of 33) from three-point range. George led the team with 15 points, but there was nothing positive about the Clipper’s performance. The Clippers went on to lose the game 124-73 as a three-point favorite.
With the loss to Dallas, the Clippers’ season averages took a severe hit. Los Angeles has averaged 103.3 ppg and allowed 113.7 ppg on the season., Los Angeles is the league’s seventh-best free-throw shooting team at 81%. George leads the team with 23.7 points per game, followed by Leonards and Serge Ibaka with 14.3 ppg. Leonard’s status for Tuesday’s matchup with Minnesota is questionable.