Suns vs. Timberwolves Preview: Total Has Great Value in Minnesota

Action Network contributor Jim Turvey details how to bet Wednesday's matchup between the Phoenix Suns and Minnesota Timberwolves.

Phoenix Suns vs. Minnesota Timberwolves Odds

Suns Odds -2.5
Timberwolves Odds +2.5
Over/Under 226
Time 8 p.m. ET
TV NBA League Pass
Odds via <!–FanDuel–>Caesars. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

Have we all settled back down from that wild Monday of NBA action? Hopefully you cleansed your palette with a not-too-lengthy wait in line for your civic duties on Tuesday and are now back and ready for more hoops.

Wednesday night’s slate may pale in comparison to what we got Monday but there are still some intriguing matchups. One such pairing is two teams whose vibes may not pass the sniff test. But the two teams are actually off to an alright start.

The Phoenix Suns sit second in the West with a 7-3 record despite a laundry list of news that *should* be hitting them a lot harder. Not the least of which is a spat of injuries we will discuss in further detail soon.

For the Minnesota Timberwolves, they have to hope that Monday’s loss to the New York Knicks ends up being the nadir of the season, because if it isn’t, that’s not a great sign for the future.

Let’s take a closer look at these two teams from a gambling perspective.

>> Download The Action Network App to get real-time NBA odds, track your bets and follow all of our experts’ picks.

Phoenix Suns

As noted just above, the Suns have won seven of their first 10 games to start the season, but it’s worth noting that they have dropped two of their last three after starting 6-1. Those three most recent games may be telling.

Cameron Johnson got injured just five minutes into that eighth game, meaning that there is a distinct difference between the first seven games and the last three.

On the surface, Johnson is probably the fifth-best starter of five for a fully healthy Suns squad, but with Jae Crowder sitting out looking for a trade request, Phoenix is now perilously thin on the wing. This was a team that already was going to have its depth tested with Crowder out and after losing JaVale McGee and Aaron Holiday during the offseason.

And Johnson was just the start.

In their last game, the Suns had both DeAndre Ayton and Chris Paul exit their loss against the Philadelphia 76ers at different points. Ayton was able to return but Paul did not. Both are now listed as questionable to play on Wednesday.

In the past couple seasons, the Suns have done very well to win with the odd starter missing to injury, but any team is going to be hard-pressed to win without three of their starters.

However, because of the ineptitude of their opponent Wednesday, I’m looking at a different way to play this. With Johnson out, the team has looked ineffective when it comes to their three-point attack — a key weakness of the Wolves that even the Knicks were able to exploit last time out. Also, if pressed to guess based on the nature of their respective injuries, I would suppose Ayton is more likely to play and Paul more likely to sit on Wednesday.

All of this points to the under for me. And nothing from the Wolves side scares me about that lean.

Minnesota Timberwolves

For one, both teams have skewed heavily to the under this season, with the Suns going under in six of their 10 games this season (one push), and the Wolves at even higher clip, doing so in eight of 11.

So far, the Wolves have lived out every fear their fans could have had coming into the season. Rudy Gobert does not at all look like a player to gut your franchise for. His fit in the offense has the whole team seemingly off, and Anthony Edwards, a mercurial talent for both good and bad, already appears to be checked out at points.

Now, this is definitely not all on Gobert. The man who seems to be the biggest punching bag in the league these days was missing from their last two games and the Wolves *still* drew boos from the home crowd in their loss against New York.

However, I do think this team is a Figuring It Out stage of life. This isn’t just bad luck that has them 5-6 and looking entirely lost at times. The offense just hasn’t figured itself out and it’s why that point total is once again what catches my eye.

Suns vs. Timberwolves Pick

Naturally, I like the under here. The total came out at 226. It’s down to 225.5 most places now and even 225 at a few spots, but I think there’s plenty of room still to go under (it’s still 226 at Caesars as well).

I would take the under all the way down to 223 and if Paul and Ayton are both ruled out, I’d go down to 221. On the other hand, if both are ruled in, or really just Paul, don’t go below 224.5.

Pick: Under 226 (-110)