Wolves at Pelicans
6:00 pm CST
In the fist quarter of the first meeting between the Wolves and Pelicans this season, the Wolves were dominant, to the tune of a 38-15 lead. In the seven quarters these teams have played since, the Pelicans outscored the Wolves by 42 points and have won both games going away.
In both games, the culprits were the same: Anthony Davis and Jrue Holiday combined to score 108 points over the two games combined, and both consistently shredded what passed for Wolves defense. Davis' scoring 27 and 35 points is not that much of a surprise--he's an All-NBA performer who regularly puts up big numbers against better teams than the Wolves. Holiday, who is having an excellent season, however, is someone the Wolves need to find a way to control. None of their point guards showed any real effectiveness in slowing him down over the course of two games, as Holiday was able to use his strength and agility to get wherever he wanted, which was mostly to the rim.
The Pels of course are having a disappointing season overall at 23-34, a result of injuries combined with a disappointing coaching change to Alvin Gentry. Their defense has plummeted to 26th in the league and they are unlikely to make the playoffs.
For the Wolves, this is the 2nd of a three game road trip that began with a close loss in Toronto to the Raptors, and finishes tomorrow in Dallas. This is likely their best chance at a win on the trip despite the Pels domination of the first two games. The Pels tend to give up a lot of easy baskets, and getting Karl-Anthony Towns going around the rim would be a big help, as well as seeing an aggressive Andrew Wiggins not settling for jump shots.
The Pels are coming off a big win against the Thunder on Thursday which once again featured big games from Davis and Holiday, as well as Ryan Anderson who they did not trade at the deadline despite persistent rumors.
They will be without Tyreke Evans, Omer Asik, Bryce Dejean-Jones, and Quincy Pondexter, all of whom are out with injuries. However, Eric Gordon is expected back in the lineup tonight. \
The Wolves will be without Nikola Pekovic, Kevin Garnett, and Nemanja Bjelica.
*Or Zach LaVine
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