Grizzlies vs. Timberwolves Odds
|Time||9 p.m. ET|
|Odds via <!–BetMGM–>BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
It has been amazing to watch these two young, talented teams duke it out back and forth. This has been one of the most entertaining series thus far and feels destined to go to a Game 7. Both Games 4 and 5 were decided by two points or fewer, so this tells you how close it has been.
This exciting series returns to Minnesota for Game 6. The Wolves are down 3-2 and are in a do-or-die situation on Friday night. But make no mistake, the Timberwolves could have won this series by now.
Similar to Game 3, the Wolves entered the fourth quarter of Game 5 with a double-digit lead.
Ja Morant was on his way to a clunker of a game. However, he was reinvigorated after a highlight-reel poster dunk at the end of the third quarter. The momentum from that play carried over into the fourth quarter and Morant reeled off 18 points, including the game-winning lay-up for the Memphis Grizzlies.
The Wolves have now blown two fourth quarter leads in this series. If they go on to lose this series, they can blame their lack of discipline and execution down the stretch.
Minnesota responded well after Game 3 with a win at home in Game 4. Can it respond again after another demoralizing loss and force a Game 7? The Timberwolves are small underdogs at home and the total is at 229. Let’s dive into this matchup to see if we can extract any betting value.
Desmond Bane Thrives on the Road
After head coach Taylor Jenkins stated after Game 4 was the most poorly officiated game in his career, the Grizzlies did indeed get a favorable whistle in Game 5, earning 39 trips to the free throw line compared to Minnesota’s 24. Unfortunately, the Grizzlies shot terribly from the charity stripe and only converted 26-for-39 (66.7%).
Second-year sharpshooter Desmond Bane was rather quiet in Games 1 and 2, but he’s caught fire since. He came alive in Game 3 with 26 points and hit seven 3-pointers. He scored 34 points and hit eight 3-pointers in Game 4 and scored another 25 points in Game 5. His splits show that he performs much better on the road:
Road: 20.1 PPG, 48.1 FG%, 47.6 3-Pt %
Home: 16.4 PPG, 44.0 FG%, 39.1 3-Pt %
The variance is staggering, but fortunately for the Grizzlies, they’ll be looking to close out the Wolves on the road. His points and 3-point player props are ones I would target.
Jaren Jackson Jr. has had consistent issues with foul trouble and cannot stay on the floor. He only logged 17 minutes in Game 5 due to foul trouble and fouled out in both Games 4 and 5. His awareness of game situations needs to get better if the Grizzlies want to perform at their best.
Do the Timberwolves Have for Another Gutsy Performance?
The Wolves showed a lot of adversity coming back to win Game 4 after the demoralizing meltdown in Game 3. They’ll need another gutsy performance in Game 6.
20-year-old Anthony Edwards has made a huge leap this season and in the playoffs, establishing himself as one of the league’s brightest rising stars. He is averaging 24.2 points per game in this first round and has done so efficiently, shooting 46.5% from the field and 40.4% behind the arc.
He made a game-tying 3-pointer right before Morant’s game-winning layup, but resorted to “hero ball” and put up some poor shots in the prior possessions, allowing the Grizzlies to take lead.
The Timberwolves held a players-only meeting in advance of Game 6 to address some of these issues. They stressed ball movement to avoid a stagnant and predictable offense.
After struggling for Games 2 and 3, Karl-Anthony Towns has strung together two strong outings. Even though he was productive on the offensive end, he once again struggled with foul trouble in Game 5.
The Wolves gave up 18 offensive rebounds to the Grizzlies and turned the ball over 23 times. The Grizzlies’ bread and butter was capitalizing on second chance points and points off turnovers. Brandon Clarke grabbed nine offensive rebounds for the Grizzlies and had his second game with 20-plus points in this series. He has proven to be the X-Factor in this series with stellar play on both sides of the ball.
The people want a Game 7! Can the Timberwolves make it happen?
There’s been plenty of back-and-forth going on in this series. However, Memphis is the more complete team and is able to execute better down the stretch. I think Memphis would have comfortably won Game 5 if it was able to make free throws.
The Grizzlies have unleashed a beast in Clarke, who has made a dramatic difference on both ends of the floor. His athleticism has bothered Towns on the defensive end. His energy on the offensive boards and ability to finish has given the Grizzlies some easy buckets.
Road favorites in Game 6 are 28-11-1 (71.8%) ATS dating back to the 2004-2005 season, per our Bet Labs tool.
I expect the Grizzlies to finish the series on Friday night. I’ll bet on the better, more disciplined team to prevail.
Pick: Grizzlies Moneyline (up to -120)