Home » Nuggets vs. Timberwolves preview, odds, schedule, prediction, betting trends for 2023 NBA Playoffs series

Nuggets vs. Timberwolves preview, odds, schedule, prediction, betting trends for 2023 NBA Playoffs series

After a completely one-sided Play-In Tournament game between the Thunder and Timberwolves, the Western Conference playoff bracket is set.

Minnesota throttled Oklahoma City on Friday night, clinching a playoff berth for the second consecutive season. The Timberwolves will next face the Nuggets, who finished with an impressive 53-29 record in the regular season.

Can the Timberwolves challenge the West’s No. 1 seed? Here’s a breakdown of this first-round series.

MORE: Ranking the NBA’s best 30 players entering the playoffs

Nuggets vs. Timberwolves 2022-23 regular season series

  • Jan. 2, 2023: Timberwolves 124, Nuggets 111
  • Jan. 18, 2023: Nuggets 122, Timberwolves 118
  • Feb. 5, 2023: Timberwolves 128, Nuggets 98
  • Feb. 7, 2023: Nuggets 146, Timberwolves 112

The Nuggets and Timberwolves split their regular season series with each team winning their home games. Nikola Jokic missed the third meeting, and without its MVP candidate, Denver lost by 30 points.

Nuggets vs. Timberwolves key storyline: How will Minnesota defend Nikola Jokic?

The Timberwolves’ Play-In win over the Thunder was a terrific example of how good they can be defensively.

Minnesota held Oklahoma City to just 36 percent shooting from the field. The Timberwolves put the clamps on Josh Giddey, holding the 20-year-old to just six points on 2-of-13 shooting after he racked up 31 points against the Pelicans.

That defense will be tested when the Wolves take the floor against the NBA’s fifth-best offense, which is spearheaded by Jokic. He is once again an MVP candidate and presents Minnesota with significant problems.

The Timberwolves have big bodies to throw at Jokic, like three-time Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert and three-time All-Star Karl Anthony Towns, but neither player can handle Jokic on an island.

Jokic is more than capable of beating either Gobert or Towns off the dribble to score at the hoop or create for teammates. And if the Timberwolves decide to play Jokic for the drive and drop back, he will be comfortable taking midrange jumpers or 3-pointers.

Chris Finch’s team could gamble on sending Kyle Anderson at Jokic on the perimeter, but that comes with the risk of the big man outmuscling the smaller Anderson in the post.

No matter how you slice it, Jokic’s game will likely prove to be too much for the Timberwolves to handle.

Nuggets vs. Timberwolves schedule, TV channels

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Nuggets vs. Timberwolves schedule
Date Game Time (ET) TV channel
April 16 Game 1 10:30 p.m. TNT
April 19 Game 2 10 p.m. TNT
April 21 Game 3 9:30 p.m. ESPN
April 23 Game 4 9:30 p.m. TNT
April 25 Game 5* TBD TBD
April 27 Game 6* TBD TBD
April 29 Game 7* TBD TNT

*If necessary

Nuggets vs. Timberwolves odds

Nuggets: -475

Timberwolves: +370

(Odds provided by DraftKings)

Nuggets vs. Timberwolves prediction

Don’t be fooled by the regular season games — this is not a fair fight.

The Nuggets have played well all season, and they are simply the more complete team in this matchup. Look for the Nuggets to sweep.