Thunder vs Timberwolves Odds, Prediction and Betting Trends for Play-In Tournament

Thunder vs Timberwolves Odds, Prediction and Betting Trends for Play-In Tournament

The final game in the NBA’s play-in tournament is Friday night from the Western Conference as Oklahoma City visits Minnesota with the winner advancing to face West top-seeded Denver in the first round of the playoffs on Sunday. The Wolves are favored on the NBA odds.


Thunder vs. Timberwolves Play-In Tournament | 2023 NBA Expert Analysis


How to Bet Oklahoma City at Minnesota NBA Odds & TV Info

When: Friday, 9:30 PM ET
Where: Target Center
Stream: ESPN+
NBA Odds: Timberwolves -5.5 (total 228)


Season Series

Minnesota won the regular-season series 3-1 but all four games, rather strangely, were played in the 2022 portion of the schedule. It’s the first playoff matchup between the franchises since way back in 1998 when the Thunder were still the Seattle Supersonics.


Why Bet on Oklahoma City?

The Thunder were 123-118 upset winners at New Orleans on Wednesday to end the Pelicans’ season. Luguentz Dort finished with a season-high 27 points, which came out of nowhere considering he averaged only 13.7 points per game this season. He hit four of his first six 3-point attempts, scoring 20 points in the first half. That was good enough to keep the Thunder in the lead.

All-Star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 32 points, five rebounds and three assists. SGA suffered through a sluggish first half but made up for it after halftime, scoring 25 points and a go-ahead jumper to seal the win. Young Aussie Josh Giddey finished with 31 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds.

When the Pelicans forced the ball out of SGA’s hands, the ball often found Giddey, who more times than not made the Pelicans pay.

“He was amazing,” Gilgeous-Alexander said. “He was the best version of himself. He was aggressive, he made the right plays and he was confident. When Josh is those things, he’s a really good basketball player.”

On the night Oklahoma City made its return to the NBA postseason for the first time since 2020, it didn’t look like a rebuilding franchise. This team is one of the youngest in the history of the league.

Maybe it’s a good thing the Thunder are under .500 this season. Against winning teams, the Timberwolves are 25-22, the second-best mark in the West behind No. 1 seed Denver. Against losing teams, they are just 17-18 – six more losses than any other team that finished in the top-10 (either playoffs or play-in participants) in the conference. Against bad teams, Minnesota tends to have major lapses in concentration. It has been particularly glaring after halftime, when the Wolves have a net rating of minus-4.4 for the season vs. under .500 teams.

Oklahoma City finished tied with Brooklyn, Cleveland, and Indiana for the most 10+ point comeback wins this season with 17. The Thunder ranked tied for fourth for the most 15+ point comeback wins.

Bet Thunder to Win Today
MyBookie Betting Lines for the Game


Why Bet on Minnesota?

The Timberwolves were in control for much of their play-in game at the Lakers on Tuesday but lost 108-102 in overtime playing without All-Star center and three-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert.

The Lakers trailed most of the way but were able to take a three-point lead after Dennis Schroder hit a corner three with 1.4 seconds remaining in regulation. On the next possession, Mike Conley was fouled on a three-point attempt by Anthony Davis. Conley knocked down all three clutch free-throws sending the game into overtime. His free throws were the only trips to the line the Timberwolves had in the second half and overtime as the referees seemed to favor LA. Conley finished with 17 points and seven assists.

Karl-Anthony Towns led Minnesota with 24 points, 11 rebounds and five assists. With Gobert suspended, Jaden McDaniels injured and Anthony Edwards struggling, the offensive weight fell on KAT’s shoulders. He wasn’t able to make many plays down the stretch, but his production throughout the game is the main reason that Minnesota was able to take a big lead early.

Edwards had just nine points (3-for-17 FGs) in the loss. After dominating the Pelicans to single handedly carry Minnesota into the 8-seed, Edwards was a complete no-show. All three shots he hit were at the rim, as he shot 0-for-9 beyond the arc. While his struggles lasted the entire game, the entire team couldn’t get anything going late. Over the final 11 minutes of the game, they shot 2-for-16 from the floor and turned it over eight times.

Gobert’s suspension for punching teammate Kyle Anderson in the regular-season finale is over but he’s questionable with back issues. Speaking to reporters Thursday for the first time since the public fight, Gobert said he probably wouldn’t have been healthy enough to play the Lakers anyway.

“Still pretty sore, still not moving like I would like to be able to move, but small progress every day,” said Gobert.

The Wolves will be without at least one starter in McDaniels because of a broken hand that occurred after he punched a wall in the tunnel near the bench out of frustration during the same game when Gobert struck Anderson in the upper chest. One of the Wolves’ top reserves, center Naz Reid, is out with a broken wrist.

Anderson started for Gobert on Tuesday and had 12 points, five rebounds, a game-high 13 assists, four steals and four blocks. His 13 assists ranked second in Play-In history, only Russell Westbrook has had more (15).

Taurean Prince started for McDaniels and had 14 points, three rebounds and three assists in a season-high 43 minutes. He missed a crucial three-pointer deep into overtime that would have tied the game.

Bet Timberwolves to Win Today
MyBookie Betting Lines for the Game


Game Trends

  • Thunder are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 games overall.
  • Thunder are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 road games.
  • Timberwolves are 2-7 ATS in their last 9 home games.
  • Timberwolves are 1-6 ATS in their last 7 home games vs. a team with a losing road record.
  • Thunder are 2-5 ATS in the last 7 meetings.

Expert Prediction

Timberwolves 118, Thunder 115


Shai Gilgeous-Alexander GOES OFF For 32 Points In Thunder Play-In


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