The Minnesota Timberwolves (19-44) head to Houston to take on the Rockets (39-24) in what should be a fast-paced game. The game’s Over/Under (O/U) opened at 244.5 points with Houston set as a 12.5-point favorite. Action gets underway at 8 p.m. ET on Tuesday, March 10, 2020, and it can be seen on ATTSN Southwest.
Minnesota Timberwolves at Houston Rockets Free Preview
In the Timberwolves’ last outing, they were beaten by the New Orleans Pelicans, 120-107. They were not able to cover as 7-point underdogs. Minnesota’s Malik Beasley had a solid performance, leading the team in scoring with 21 points on 8-for-20 shooting. New Orleans held the Timberwolves to an offensive rebounding percentage of 17.0 (below their season average of 22.2). Minnesota, meanwhile, forced the Pelicans into a turnover percentage of 19.4 (above their season average of 13.2). The two teams combined to score 227 points, which was well under the projected point total of 249.
The Rockets were unable to cover as 8-point favorites in their 126-106 loss to the Orlando Magic in their last matchup. With 23 points, seven rebounds and six assists, Houston’s James Harden put together a solid game. Orlando’s 32.5 offensive rebounding percentage was their largest advantage over Houston, who had a mark of 23.4. The Magic’s mark was above their season average of 22.2. The two clubs combined to score 232 points, which was over the O/U total of 228.5.
Houston could have their way on the offensive side of the ball as their high-powered offense faces off against one of the league’s worst defenses. The Rockets rank second in offensive efficiency, while Minnesota ranks 21st in defensive efficiency.
In terms of the O/U total, these teams are complete opposites. Minnesota games have gone over 57.1 percent of the time, while games involving Houston have gone under 55.6 percent of the time. Looking at straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) records, the Rockets have a clear advantage. They are 39-24 SU and 31-32 ATS, while the Timberwolves are 19-44 SU and 22-39-2 ATS.
These two teams have already met three times this season, with the Rockets winning all three. In the most recent contest, Russell Westbrook scored a game-high 45 points and the Rockets beat the Timberwolves 131-124, covering as 5.5-point favorites. He also had 10 assists and six rebounds. The two teams combined for 255 points, which was 20.5 points above the projected point total of 234.5 points. The Rockets dominated nearly every stat category in the game. They had a superb free throw rate of 0.286 and a solid turnover percentage of 9.5. The Timberwolves recorded marks of 0.173 and 13.7, respectively, for those same stats.
Timberwolves at Rockets ATS Prediction
Prediction: SU Winner – Rockets, ATS Winner – Timberwolves, O/U – Under
The Rockets average 45.1 rebounds per game, which ranks 13th in the NBA. The Timberwolves rank last in rebounds allowed per game (47.6).
Minnesota averages 49.1 points in the paint per game, which ranks 10th in the league. Houston ranks 24th in points allowed in the paint per game (51.5).
Minnesota averages 8.7 steals per game, which ranks third in the NBA. Houston ranks 18th in steals allowed per game (7.9).
Minnesota ranks 20th in assists per game (23.9) while Houston ranks 29th (21.4).
Minnesota is 15-15-1 ATS on the road with 20 overs and 11 unders.
At home, Houston is 15-16 ATS with 16 overs and 15 unders.
Houston is 3-0 when they hold opponents under 100 points, while Minnesota is 2-1.
When scoring over 100 points, the Rockets are 39-20 and the Timberwolves are 18-36.
The Rockets average 5.1 blocks per game, which ranks 10th in the league. The Timberwolves rank 25th in blocks allowed per game (5.6).
Minnesota ranks third in three pointers attempted per game (39.8) while Houston ranks 24th in three pointers allowed per game (35.2).
The Rockets rank sixth in points off turnovers per game (18.5) while the Timberwolves rank 24th in points off turnovers allowed per game (17.8).
The Timberwolves rank 12th in fast break points allowed per game (13.0) while the Rockets rank 25th (15.6).
Minnesota ranks ninth in second chance points per game (13.6) while Houston ranks 27th in second chance points allowed per game (14.0).
Houston is 1-4 ATS with 3 unders and 2 overs in its last five games.
Across its past five outings, Minnesota is 2-3 ATS with 3 unders and 2 overs.
The Rockets have been outscored by an average of 9.0 points in their last five games. For the season, Houston has defeated opponents by an average of 3.7 points.
During their last five games, the Timberwolves have scored an average of 114.0 points per game (0.7 above their season average) and allowed an average of 121.0 points per game (3.4 above their season average).