The Minnesota Timberwolves welcome the LA Lakers to the Target Center in a game that is expected to be a lopsided affair in favor of the 17-time NBA champions. The Timberwolves are 7-20 for the season and are rooted to the bottom of the Western Conference. The LA Lakers, meanwhile, are chasing the top spot with a 21-7 record.
Fixture: LA Lakers vs Minnesota Timberwolves | NBA Season 2020-21
Date & Time: Tuesday, February 16th, 8:00 PM ET (Wednesday, February 17th, 6:30 AM IST)
Venue: Target Center, Minnesota
LA Lakers Preview
LA Lakers' 7-game winning run was halted on Sunday when last year's Western Conference finalists, the Denver Nuggets handed them a 105-122 loss. Anthony Davis' exit due to an Achilles issue made matters worse, and he is set to miss 2-3 weeks of action.
The Lakers' strength has been their strong defense, as they have limited opponents to 105.8 points per game, which is the second-best mark in the league. Off-season acquisitions, Montrezl Harrell and Dennis Schroder have been a key part of the rotation, averaging 13 points each. Head coach Frank Vogel will expect them to step up in Anthony Davis' absence.
Key Player - LeBron James
LeBron James has been on a tear this season, averaging an incredible 25.5 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 assists per game. He is currently the favorite to win the NBA MVP trophy and has carried the LA Lakers offense on his shoulders this season.
The 4-time champion has also managed to tally 1.1 steals and 0.5 blocks per game while shooting a respectable 38% from downtown. The Minnesota Timberwolves' defense has been poor, and James will have an opportunity to produce fireworks.
LA Lakers Predicted Lineup
G- LeBron James, G- Dennis Schroder, F- Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, F- Markieff Morris, C- Marc Gasol
Minnesota Timberwolves Preview
The Minnesota Timberwolves have been one of the worst teams of the season and are headed towards the lottery. The Wolves managed to win their last game against the Toronto Raptors thanks to some clutch plays. But they will be coming up against a much sterner opposition in the form of the LA Lakers tonight.
Malik Beasley has been a consistent performer for the Wolves this season, averaging 20.9 points and 5.1 rebounds per game, on an impressive 40% shooting from behind the arc.
Key Player - Karl Anthony-Towns
Karl Anthony-Towns has played only 7 games so far, mostly due to a lengthy absence because of Covid-19. However, he has looked in good touch since returning, tallying 21.6 points and 11 rebounds per game. Towns has been leading the offense following an injury to star point guard D'Angelo Russell, and so far he has lived up to expectations.
LA Lakers won't have Anthony Davis for tonight's game, and Towns will be coming up against a much weaker matchup in Marc Gasol.
Minnesota Timberwolves Predicted Lineup
G- Ricky Rubio, G- Anthony Edwards, F- Malik Beasley, F- Jarred Vanderbilt, C- Karl Anthony-Towns
Lakers vs Timberwolves Match Prediction
The LA Lakers have been one of the best teams of the campaign, while the Minnesota Timberwolves have struggled to string together wins. The Lakers are the firm favorites to win this encounter, and only a miraculous performance will be able to bail out the Wolves.
Where to watch Lakers vs Timberwolves
Local coverage of the LA Lakers-Minnesota Timberwolves game will be available on Spectrum Sportsnet and Fox Sports North. The game will also be streamed live on the NBA League Pass.