Timberwolves vs. Lakers Expert Picks - April 11th, 2023
TIMBERWOLVES VS. LAKERS EXPERT PICKS - APRIL 11th, 2023 - The NBA Playoffs are here, but first things first is the NBA Play-In Tournament. The format is simple: the 7 and 8 seeds face off against each other with the winner moving on to take on the 2 seed. The loser plays the winner of the 9-10 game, and the winner of that game moves on to be the 8 seed.
The Western Conference Play-In Tournament features the Los Angeles Lakers with LeBron James and Anthony Davis against the distressed Minnesota Timberwolves. Let’s take a look at this game.
When: Tuesday, April 11, 2023 at 10:00 PM ET
Where: Crypto.com Arena, Los Angeles, California
Public Bets: Lakers, 69%
Public Money: Lakers. 85%
Odds courtesy of DraftKings, as of April 10, 2023
Minnesota Timberwolves vs Los Angeles Lakers Season Trends
The Lakers season got off to a brutal 2-10 start, and things did not look promising one bit. However, Rob Pelinka pulled off a few trades to improve the roster and was able to send Russell Westbrook out of town, and things changed from then on.
Los Angeles finished the season 9-2 in the final 11 games to surge into the 7-seed in the Western Conference, and Anthony Davis and LeBron James are healthy heading into the postseason.
The Timberwolves season ended with a ton of drama. Minnesota beat the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday, but Rudy Gobert and Kyle Anderson got into it during a huddle, with Gobert throwing a punch at his teammate.
The turmoil around the Timberwolves team will be a story to monitor in this game and the following games, and there could be some changes coming this offseason after a drama-filled campaign.
Nonetheless, Minnesota won the final three games to finish with a 42-40 record. Rudy Gobert has also been suspended for the game after the altercation with Anderson, so that’s a crushing blow to Minnesota.
Minnesota Timberwolves vs Los Angeles Lakers Head-To-Head & Betting Trends
The Lakers and Timberwolves have played three times this season with Minnesota winning two of the three contests. In the most recent matchup, Anthony Davis led the way with 38 points and 17 rebounds as all five Lakers’ starters finished in double figures in the 12-point win.
In the very first meeting of the year in October, Davis missed the game and Rudy Gobert took advantage with 22 points and 21 rebounds in a 9-point victory. In the other matchup in March, LeBron James didn’t suit up, so the Lakers and Wolves have played just once this season where both LA stars have been on the floor.
This game means something more for Jarred Vanderbilt, D’Angelo Russell, and Malik Beasley, as all three were with the Wolves previously before coming to LA in a three-team deal with the Utah Jazz at the NBA Trade Deadline.
The Lakers enter this game as heavy favorites, and it’s hard to argue. LeBron and AD are playing top-level basketball at the perfect time, and Austin Reaves has emerged as a top option in the LA offense.
The Wolves have all kinds of issues despite a three-game winning streak, and the Gobert incident might be tough for this team to deal with. Minnesota's center won’t be on the floor, so it will be interesting to see how they contain Anthony Davis in this game.
The Lakers get this win and cover the spread, although Anthony Edwards has a massive game and tries to lead the Timberwolves into the playoffs with a strong outing.
As far as the O/U, neither team is fundamentally sound on defense. The Timberwolves offense averages 116 PPG and the Lakers average 117, and there is a chance both teams score 120 points in this game. I’ll take the over in this contest.
Player Prop Bet
LeBron James, Anthony Edwards, Karl-Anthony Towns, and Anthony Davis are the stars of this game. However, I’m rolling with Austin Reaves in this prop bet.
The Lakers guard has emerged as a quality starter, and he is set at 15.5 points. Reaves has scored double digits in each of the last 10 games, including four games of 20 or more and six games north of 15 points.
The Wolves will have to zero in on LeBron and Davis, so Reaves should have plenty of opportunities. Reaves goes over 15.5 points in this game.
OVER 231 Total Points
Austin Reaves OVER 15.5 Total Points