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Scouting Report | Wolves vs. Celtics

by Kyle Ratke, Digital Content Manager

Digital Content Manager

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Timberwolves vs. Celtics, 7 p.m.
Target Center
TNT, 830 WCCO

Why you should be at Target Center:

This is Minnesota’s first home game since Feb. 24 and the Wolves are in the middle of the best playoff race that we’ve seen in quite a while.

The Wolves go into the game with a 38-28 record, sixth in the West, 1.5 games back from No. 3 and two games back from No. 8.

Minnesota lost to Boston, 91-84, earlier this season.

The Celtics are one of the more unique teams in the NBA. They lost Gordon Hayward to one of the grossest injuries you’ll see in the season opener. But things didn’t derail for Boston. Behind Kyrie Irving and Al Horford, the team has prevailed and looks like a real Eastern Conference contender.

While the Wolves are hoping to keep their playoff hopes alive, there’s also plenty that Boston is playing for. The Celtics are just two games back from the No. 1 seed.

A few Wolves items to keep an eye on:

-       Karl-Anthony Towns leads the league with 55 double-doubles. He needs eight more to surpass his 62 last season.

-       In his last five games, Andrew Wiggins is averaging 22.8 points per game while shooting 48.9 percent from the field and 50 percent from the 3-point line. More of this, please.

-       Over the last seven games, Jeff Teague is averaging 20.9 points while shooting 44 percent from the 3-point line.

Opposing player I’ll be watching:

Irving. After missing Saturday’s game against the Bulls with a knee injury, Irving looks to return against the Wolves.

In his first season in Boston, Irving is averaging 24.8 points, 5.1 assists and 3.7 rebounds per game while shooting a career-high 49 percent from the field to go with 40.8 percent from the 3-point line.

There’s a reason why he’s made the All-Star game in five of his seven seasons in the league.

Teague and Tyus Jones will have their hands full.

The Wolves have kept Irving in check throughout his career, limiting him to 17.7 points per game while shooting 41.1 percent from the field and 26.9 percent from the 3-point line.

Another guy to keep an eye on is rookie Jayson Tatum. He’s not going to win the Rookie of the Year, but he’s 20 years old playing 30 minutes per night on one of the best teams in the league.

Injuries:                                                                                   

Celtics: Gordon Hayward (ankle) is out. Irving (knee) is questionable.

Wolves: Butler (knee) is out.

Starting Lineups:

Celtics: PG – Irving, SG – Brown, SF – Tatum, PF – Horford, C - Baynes

Wolves: PG – Teague, SG – Wiggins, SF – Bjelica, PF – Gibson, C - Towns