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Scouting Report | Wolves vs. 76ers
Tuesday, 8:30 p.m., Target Center
Where to Watch: FOX Sports North, ESPN
Listen: 830 WCCO
This is a late one, folks. Note the 8:30 p.m. start due to the game getting flexed to ESPN.
This is the second game of a five-game homestand for the Wolves.
Minnesota goes into the game with a 16-11 record, fourth in the West.
Philadelphia is 13-13, tied for eighth in the East.
Last Matchup . . .
The Wolves were 1-1 against the 76ers last season.
The last game came on Jan. 3 in Philadelphia and the Wolves fell 93-91.
Joel Embiid led Philadelphia with 25 points, eight rebounds and two blocks. Ersan Ilyasova added 19 points and five rebounds. Robert Covington added 13 points, 10 rebounds and four steals.
Zach LaVine led Minnesota with 28 points. Karl-Anthony Towns added 23 points, 16 rebounds and five assists. Gorgui Dieng had 10 points, eight rebounds and two blocks. Shabazz Muhammad led the bench with 10 points and five rebounds.
Coming Off Of . . .
The Wolves are coming off a 97-92 home win over the Mavericks on Sunday. Towns led the way with 28 points, 12 rebounds and three steals. Jimmy Butler added 22 points, eight rebounds, five assists and two steals. Jamal Crawford led the bench with 16 points. Andrew Wiggins rounded things out with 10 points.
The 76ers are coming off a 131-124 road loss to the Pelicans on Sunday. J.J. Redick led Philadelphia with 28 points. Ben Simmons added 27 points, 10 assists and five rebounds. Trevor Booker led the bench with 16 points and nine rebounds. Amir Johnson had 16 points to go with five rebounds. Dario Saric had a 13-point, 11-rebound double-double. Richaun Holmes added 12 points and nine rebounds.
Key Matchup: Jimmy Butler vs. Ben Simmons
The natural matchup would be Towns and Embiid, but with Embiid being questionable, that throws things off.
Let’s focus on two guys who are doing a little bit of everything for their squads.
In his seventh season and first with the Wolves, Butler is averaging 19 points, 5.5 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 1.8 steals per game while shooting 45.7 percent from the field, 36.3 percent from the 3-point line and 83.8 percent from the free-throw line.
In his last five games, he’s averaging 25.2 points, 5.8 rebounds, 5.8 assists and two steals per game.
Simmons, the NBA’s early leader for Rookie of the Year, is averaging 18 points, 9.2 rebounds, 7.7 assists and 2.1 steals per game while shooting 50.7 percent from the field. He’s not a threat from deep at all, as he’s taken only eight 3-pointers all season. In his last three games, he’s put up 35 assists.
Joel Embiid (back) and T.J. McConnell (shoulder) are questionable. Robert Covington (back) is doubtful. Markelle Fultz (shoulder) is out.
Nemanja Bjelica (foot) is questionable.
PG – Simmons, SG – Redick, SF – Saric, PF – Johnson, C - Embiid
PG – Teague, SG – Wiggins, SF – Butler, PF – Gibson, C - Towns