Minnesota Timberwolves vs Phoenix Suns

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The last-place Timberwolves travel West for a matchup with the high-powered Phoenix Suns in Thursday’s NBA action. Minnesota comes in with an abysmal 9-31 record and has underachieved massively despite first-overall pick Anthony Edwards showing promise. Their record is the worst in the NBA, and they are in no position for a playoff run at the moment. Things are in much better shape in Phoenix, as the Suns come in with the second-best record in the Western conference at 26-12. They appear to finally have turned the corner and have now become true contenders in 2021.

Anthony Edwards is special, so why are the Timberwolves so bad?

When Minnesota selected Anthony Edwards with the first overall pick in the 2020 Draft, the thinking was that he would fill a big need for an athletic wing guard, and paired alongside Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell, the Timberwolves would have a young, promising and stellar big three. Through 38 games, however, things have taken a drastic turn for the worst, as Minnesota has massive holes on their bench, and their key players have not been healthy, leaving Edwards out on his own, which has not been pretty.

Despite injuries to his teammates as well as depth issues, Edwards has worked his way into the starting lineup and is averaging over 16 points per game, although he has not shot the ball particularly well. With Towns still making his way back from injury and Russell nursing a leg injury, by the time they finally get to full strength, will things get any better? Minnesota now prepares for a Phoenix team Thursday, who has been one of the best teams in the league and are deep and efficient, so they are at a disadvantage from that aspect.

Suns add more depth in acquiring Torrey Craig

It may not seem like a big splash, but in a three-team deal, Phoenix acquired a terrific role player to further expand their depth in acquiring Torrey Craig from the Milwaukee Bucks. Craig is most notably known for his key role on the Denver Nuggets from 2017-2020, where he was known for his grit and defensive ability, and is a capable shooter who provides valuable minutes off the bench. He fills a big need for the Suns, and there is no doubt that they are better now than they were before the trade.

Craig joins a Phoenix bench who has been about as good as any in the league this season, and they are now a major player in the Western Conference, holding off the defending champion Lakers for the second seed by more than a game. They hold a significant advantage in all areas over Minnesota on Thursday night from the aspects of star power and depth and hope to pick up another conference victory and continue to solidify themselves as championship contenders.

The Bottom Line
What to bet on this game.

Full-Game Side Bet
Rating:

This is a pretty obvious one, and all you have to do is look at the trends. Phoenix has been awesome on Thursdays for some reason this season, and is riding a great deal of momentum after a big win over the Grizzlies. They should absolutely roll Thursday, as they are at home and the Timberwolves are coming off of short rest, not to mention they have a hard time winning any games as it is.

Prediction:
Suns -10.5

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Full-Game Total Pick
Rating:

This isn’t so much about Minnesota being competent enough to cover their end, as much as it is more about the fact that Phoenix is one of the best offensive teams in the league. They are a hot over pick this season whenever they are in action, and I think that Minnesota will do enough, and the suns do the rest in what could be a blowout victory for them.

Prediction:
Over 228