The New Orleans Pelicans and the Minnesota Timberwolves will meet this Thursday for the fourth time in the 2023-24 NBA regular season. Will the Pelicans even up their regular-season series versus Minnesota? Or, will the Timberwolves snuff New Orleans’ win streak?
Catch this game live on Thursday, January 4, 2024 at 9 AM, Manila time
Away: New Orleans Pelicans (20-14/8-7 Away)
Projected Starting Five:
- CJ McCollum
- Brandon Ingram
- Herbert Jones
- Zion Williamson
- Jonas Valanciunas
The Pelicans will look to build on their 112-85 win over the Brooklyn Nets to finish a five-game home stand on a positive note on Wednesday. That win also extended their undefeated streak to three games. Perhaps the more pertinent streak about the Pellies’ trip to the Twin Cities this Thursday is New Orleans being perfect in its last four games in enemy territory.
Although the Pelicans are only 1-2 straight up in three meetings so far this season against Minnesota, that lone victory over the Timberwolves happened in the last head-to-head on Dec. 12 at home (121-107). Plus, it’s also the only game out of those three contests where the Pelicans had Zion Williamson on the court. Well, Williamson, who terrorized Minnesota in that win for 36 points on 13/17 shooting from the field and 10/12 from the foul line, is going to be there on the floor this Thursday. The Pelicans are 3-1 against the spread in their last four road games.
Home: Minnesota Timberwolves (24-8/14-1 Home)
Projected Starting Five:
- Mike Conley
- Anthony Edwards
- Jaden McDaniels
- Karl-Anthony Towns
- Rudy Gobert
Even though they got trucked by the New York Knicks in Gotham last Tuesday, 112-106, the Timberwolves are still perched atop the entire Western Conference. Others may still need some time to get used to the fact that Minnesota is leading the pack in the West, but the Timberwolves are certainly doing a good job at making a case as to why they’re more contenders than pretenders.
Either way, the Timberwolves will be looking to stymie New Orleans with their league-leading defense. The Timberwolves are tops in the NBA with just 107.5 points allowed per game and also No. 1 with a 50.7 defensive eFG%. Adjusted for strength of schedule, Minnesota’s defense is still the best overall with only 109.5 points allowed per 100 possessions. Also worth mentioning is Anthony Edwards being active for this game unlike in the last meeting with New Orleans because of a right hip pointer. On the season, Edwards is averaging 26.3 points per game on 59.6 TS%. The Timberwolves are 2-0 ATS in their last two home games against New Orleans.
Spread: The Timberwolves (-7.0) cover the spread.
Over/Under: The total (224.0) hits the Over.