Minnesota At San Antonio
When: 8:30 PM
ET, Friday, December 13, 2013
Where: AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas
The Minnesota Timberwolves won back-to-back games to get back to .500 but will see the competition ramp back up when they open a three-game road trip at the San Antonio Spurs on Friday. The Spurs and Timberwolves were supposed to meet in Mexico City on Dec. 4 before a generator malfunction filled the arena with smoke and forced that game to be postponed. San Antonio ripped through a two-game road trip and is getting the best from Tim Duncan.
The future Hall of Famer got off to a slow start at age 37 but is coming around of late and is averaging 17.6 points and 11.6 rebounds while shooting 59 percent in the last five games. “My shot’s starting to come around a little bit,” Duncan told the Spurs’ official website. “The first 20 games it hadn’t been there, so I hope it stays with me.” The Timberwolves needed to overcome a 19-point deficit to earn a 106-99 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday and got strong efforts from Kevin Love in each of the last two contests.
TV: 8:30 p.m. ET, FSN North (Minnesota), FSN Southwest (San Antonio)
ABOUT THE TIMBERWOLVES (11-11): Minnesota is one of the top scoring teams in the NBA but ranks in the bottom third in scoring defense and let the 76ers put up 39 first-quarter points on Wednesday. The Timberwolves locked in from there, however, and are hoping for a better start at San Antonio. “The way we started the (Philadelphia) game, we have to learn a lesson,” coach Rick Adelman said. “When you get a nice win last night it means nothing tonight and you better understand that.” Love posted his second straight game of at least 25 points, 15 rebounds and five assists on Wednesday and has five such outbursts this season.
ABOUT THE SPURS (17-4): Duncan used to be a nightly candidate for 25-15-5 but is picking his spots more efficiently as age catches up and went for 21 points and 16 boards on Wednesday - his second 20-15 showing in the last four contests. He remains a strong post passer and is part of a San Antonio squad that relies on rapid ball movement while leading the NBA with an average of 25 assists. The Spurs had eight players record at least nine points in Wednesday’s 109-77 demolition of the Milwaukee Bucks and lead the Western Conference with a 49.3 field-goal percentage.
1. The Timberwolves have taken two straight in the series and picked up a 107-83 win in their last trip to San Antonio on Mar. 12 behind Ricky Rubio’s triple-double.
2. Spurs F/C Aron Baynes (ankle) and C Tiago Splitter (calf) are both questionable for Friday.
3. Minnesota G Kevin Martin scored a season-low five points on 1-of-9 shooting on Wednesday and is shooting 34 percent in his last four games.
PREDICTION: Spurs 105, Timberwolves 96
Stats and Records
San Antonio Off vs
102.9 Points For
101.4 Points Against