Wolves Playoff Watch Viewing Guide, March 5, 2018
Web Editorial Associate
As expected, the Western Conference playoff race has been an exciting one.
Four games separate the third-seeded Blazers from the 10th seeded Jazz, and the Wolves are sitting right in the middle in fifth.
While the Wolves’ best way to ensure their first playoff appearance since 2004 is to win their own games, a little help (read, losses) from their competitors would not go unappreciated.
Wolves fans, here’s your viewing guide for tonight:
Grizzlies at Spurs, 6:30 p.m., League Pass
Talk about two teams that need a win.
The Spurs, losers in eight of their last 10 games, and facing questions surrounding the health of star Kahwi Leonard, are falling in the standings, currently sitting in sixth place in the Western Conference with a record of 36-27. Every Spurs loss is good news for the Wolves, who are currently half a game ahead of San Antonio.
Memphis, meanwhile, is mired in a league-leading 13-game losing streak. They have a record of 18-44, the worst in the league. At this point, they’re looking towards next year, but with Marc Gasol on the roster, they have the talent to win on any given night. Wolves fan should be hoping tonight is the night the Grizzlies finally find their way back into the win column.
Magic at Jazz, 7:00 p.m., League Pass
Wolves fans probably won’t need much convincing to root against the Jazz after Saturday’s chippy contest, but if you’re looking for a reason, here it is. Utah (33-30) is now two games out of the eight seed after catching fire at the end of January. The Wolves (and the rest of the teams in the playoff hunt) should be hoping for the Jazz to cool off. This race doesn’t need to get any more crowded.
Minnesota fans should be rooting for Orlando to pull off the upset. Led by Aaron Gordon, the 20-43 Magic have won two in a row against the Pistons and Grizzlies. However, a win on the road against a club playing their best basketball of the season might be a tall order for the youthful Magic.
Blazers at Lakers, 8:30 p.m., NBATV
Speaking of teams playing their best ball of the season, the Trail Blazers are officially on fire. Home wins against the Wolves and Thunder have propelled Portland into third place in the West as they travel to L.A. to take on the also-surging Lakers.
While L.A. has been playing well, they are pretty much out of the playoff hunt. Three year-veteran Julius Randle has hit his stride lately and point guard Lonzo Ball stepped up for the Lakers in a win against the Spurs on Saturday. The Wolves are hoping the rookie continues to lead his team to victories against higher-seeded Western Conference teams.
What a playoff race! It’s certainly kept us all on the edge of our seats.