Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Indiana Pacers Pick & Prediction DECEMBER 16th 2023

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The Minnesota Timberwolves will return home from a three-game road trip to face the Indiana Pacers on Saturday night in Minneapolis.

The Timberwolves went 2-1 on their trip, including a 119-101 win over the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday in their most recent game. Naz Reid scored a team-high 27 points off the bench, and Karl-Anthony Towns notched 21 points and 17 rebounds.

The victory helped the Timberwolves to maintain an impressive feat this season: They have yet to lose back-to-back games. That is part of the reason Minnesota, which has seven victories in its past eight games, leads the Western Conference.

“It’s a combination of the character in this locker room, everyone buying into what we feel like we could be and truly believing it,” Towns said. “Two, I think it’s experience and wisdom. The last two seasons, we made the playoffs. …

“(It’s) just a different mindset when you expect to be in the playoffs and you expect to come in and give yourselves a chance. I see our team, the way we act, the way we approach these games. It’s about not only winning the games but finding that 1 percent every day to get better.”

Minnesota will face a Pacers team on short rest. Indiana is coming off a 137-123 road loss against the Washington Wizards on Friday night, the Pacers’ second defeat in a row.

Now, the Pacers will try to avoid their first three-game losing streak of the season. They might have to do so without their top scorer, Tyrese Haliburton, who sustained a left knee contusion against the Wizards.

Haliburton said he was not sure if he would be able to play in Minnesota.

“I’m fine, I’m just banged up a little bit,” he said. “There was a little wet spot on the floor. I landed on my hip, that’s fine, but me and (the Wizards’ Bilal Coulibaly) went knee to knee. So (it’s) just a little sore right now.”

On Friday, the Pacers also did not have Andrew Nembhard (right knee bone bruise).

The Timberwolves also have a question mark surrounding the health status of their top scorer. Anthony Edwards is listed as questionable because of a hip pointer.

Edwards played 35 minutes against Dallas on Thursday but seemed to struggle with the lingering injury. He shot 3-for-19 from the field and 0-for-3 from beyond the 3-point arc, and he finished with nine points to go along with two rebounds and 11 assists.

On the season, Edwards is averaging 23.6 points, 5.5 rebounds and 5.2 assists. He is shooting 43.7 percent from the field and 36.9 percent from 3-point range.

Minnesota coach Chris Finch is pleased with the way his team has handled adversity throughout the season. The Timberwolves will be tested again by a Pacers team that has scored at least 120 points in seven straight contests (excluding the in-season tournament final).

“(We’re) just being a little less emotional out there,” Finch said. “We led the league in technicals last year. This year, we’re way more composed. We’re more about our basketball and just the way we communicate with each other is, I think, very purposeful and a lot more mature in that way.”

–Field Level Media

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