NBA Pick: Memphis Grizzlies, Minnesota Timberwolves ‘over’ 185½

LT Profits Sports Group

Saturday, March 30, 2013 4:00 AM GMT

The Grizzlies have been struggling on the road lately with their normally stingy defense suddenly springing some leaks, and the Timberwolves have been scoring so go ‘over’ Saturday.

Look for a higher scoring game than the posted total may indicate on Saturday night when the Memphis Grizzlies (48-24, 19-16 away) pay a visit to those Minnesota Timberwolves (26-45, 17-18 home) at the Target Center in Minneapolis, MN at 8:05 ET.

The posted total at Bookmaker Sportsbook is 185½ for this contest with the current odds on the ‘over’ set at -110.

Both of these teams are playing the second of a back-to-back, with the Grizzlies coming off of a 103-94 home win over the Rockets on Friday that managed to sneak ‘over’ the posted total of 195, marking the fourth consecutive ‘over’ for a team that is still ranked second in the NBA in points against at 90.0 points per game.

Now the good news is that part of the reason for the Memphis ‘over’ run is that its offense has improved as the season has gone on despite trading away Rudy Gay shortly before the trading deadline. Yes the Grizzlies are still just 26th in the league in scoring at 93.7 points per game over the entire season, but that average has ballooned to 102.0 points over the last four games with the Grizzlies topping 100 points in three of those contests.

Unfortunately, the other reason for the recent ‘over’ success is that the Grizzlies have not looked at all like the second best defense in the league, as the win last night snapped a streak of three straight games where Memphis allowed over 100 points. Moreover, the Grizz have lost five straight road games, so those defensive struggles may begin to resurface tonight.

Memphis allowed 108 points to the New York Knick and 107 points to the Washington Wizards in the last two road contests, and a Grizzlies team that ranks seventh in field goal percentage allowed on the year at 44.0 percent is allowing a generous 48.5 percent success rate over the last four games.

The Timberwolves deserve a lot of credit as it would be very easy for a 26-45 team to mail it in at this time of the year, especially with their superstar Kevin Love still out, but the Wolves have continued to play hard and they could still wreak havoc with the Western Conference playoff race, especially when playing here at home.

The last two games epitomize that as the Timberwolves upset Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder 101-93 last night after falling just short vs. Blake Griffin and the Los Angeles Clippers in their previous contest when they fell 120-117 here in the Twin Cities on Wednesday.

Add in a 105-82 road win in Detroit Tuesday and the T-Wolves have now topped 100 points in three straight games and are averaging a whopping 107.4 points on a scorching 49.3 percent shooting over the last five games. Minnesota has even hit 39.0 percent of its three-point attempts in those contests, and this is a club that is dead last in the NBA in three-point shooting at an even 30.0 percent.

With both offenses on the improve and the Memphis defense tailing off, let us go ‘over’ at the Target Center on Saturday.

[gameodds]5/223375/93-238-19-92-1096/us[/gameodds]

NBA Pick: Grizzlies, Timberwolves ‘over’ 185½ (-110)