The Minnesota Timberwolves had one of their best shooting nights of the season in Tuesdays win over the San Antonio Spurs. They're hoping some of that will carry over into tonight's game vs. the Pacers as the Wolves will be seeking consecutive wins for the first time since winning four-straight during a stretch Dec. 7-15.
A big part of Tuesday's win was Ricky Rubio. Ricky finished with his first NBA career triple double with 21pts, 13reb & 12ast.
Tonight they'll face the Indiana Pacers. The Pacers are currently ranked #3 in the Eastern Conference and will likely fall anywhere from #2 to #5 out East when it's all said and done. They had a chance to snap the Heat's winning streak on Sunday night, but lost 91-105.
The Pacers have been very good this season though. They've played the majority of the season without Danny Granger and still remain one of the Eastern Conference's best teams. That's thanks in large part to the emergence of Paul George as an all-star caliber talent, David West & George Hill.
The Pacers are 39-24 on the year, 25-7 at home and 7-3 in their last ten games. They'll also be seeking a fourth-straight victory at home in this one. The Wolves on the other hand, have fallen completely out of the playoff race at 22-39, 7-23 on the road, 2-8 in their last ten games and currently ranked 12th in the Western Conference. The Wolves are seeking their first season series sweep over the Indiana Pacers since 2006-07. If you remember early this season, the Wolves defeated the Pacers 96-94 thanks to a Chase Budinger layup with 0.8 seconds to play.
Unfortunately the Wolves won't have Budinger (knee). Even more unfortunate they'll also be without Love (hand), Roy (knees) and Lee (knee/hip). Both Kirilenko (calf) and Pekovic (abdomen) are looking to return this week, but it won't be for this one. This will be AK's 8th straight game he sits out and it's a 7th straight for Pek.
The Pacers are without Granger who is still dealing with knee problems. He's missed the last three games and will apparently miss the next three games as well. They continue to play well without him, however.
Let's take a look at tonight's probable starting lineups...
The biggest concern will be containing that big Indiana frontcourt of Paul George, David West & Roy Hibbert. If the Wolves had Andrei Kirilenko, Kevin Love & Nikola Pekovic in the lineup it wouldn't be as big a concern. Unfortunately we've got Gelly, D-Will & Stiemer. I'd be okay bringing those guys off the bench, but to ask them to guard and match up well against one of the best frontcourts in the NBA is difficult.
The Wolves shot just over 53% from the field and 60% from deep (hitting 12 threes) in the win last night over San Antonio. If we get that kind of production from our nine healthy guys, another upset could be brewing. Unlikely, but not impossible.
Tonight's game tips off at 6pmCT from the Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Thanks for reading HOWL, enjoy the game and GO WOLVES!
Cody D. Anderson
A Wolves fan bringing you Gameday Recaps all season long!