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Scouting Report | Wolves vs. Heat

by Timberwolves.com

Mitchell Hansen
Web Editorial Associate

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7 p.m., Target Center
Where to Watch: Fox Sports North
Where to Listen: 830 WCCO

The Minnesota Timberwolves look to end their three-game skid when they take on the red-hot Miami Heat on Monday night at Target Center.

The Wolves come in at 19-32 overall and are tied for 12th place in the Western Conference. The Heat enter at 21-30 on the season and are in 12th place in the Eastern Conference.

A few tidbits prior to Monday night’s game:

  • The Heat extended their winning streak to 10 straight games with a win over Philadelphia on Monday.
  • The Wolves are playing in the second game of a six-game homestand and have won eight of their last 14 games.
  • Miami is kicking off a four-game road trip at Target Center on Monday.

Coming Off Of…

Minnesota is coming off of a 107-99 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday in Minneapolis.

Karl-Anthony Towns had 27 points and 16 rebounds to lead the Wolves. Andrew Wiggins had 23 points and five assists, Ricky Rubio had 14 points and six assists, Shabazz Muhammad had 11 points and four rebounds, Tyus Jones had 10 points and six assists, and Nemanja Bjelica had seven points and four rebounds.

Miami is coming off of a 125-102 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday in Miami.

Hassan Whiteside had 30 points and 20 rebounds to lead the Heat. Dion Waiters had 21 points and seven assists, Goran Dragic and Tyler Johnson had 16 points each, and Wayne Ellington had 11 points.

Last Matchup

Minnesota and Miami have not faced off yet this season. The last matchup between the two teams came on Nov. 17, 2015 in Miami. The Wolves won 103-91.

Minnesota, which outscored Miami 41-22 in the fourth quarter to complete the comeback victory, was led by Wiggins with 24 points and three steals. Zach LaVine had 17 points and four rebounds, Muhammad had 16 points, and Towns had 14 points and 14 rebounds.

For Miami, Whiteside had 22 points and 14 rebounds. Luol Deng had 20 points and six rebounds, Dragic had 16 points and nine assists, and Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh had 10 points each.

The second and final matchup between the two teams will come on March 17 in Miami.

Key Matchup: Brandon Rush vs. Dion Waiters

One key to Miami’s current 10-game winning streak has been the play of Dion Waiters. During that span, he has averaged 21.5 points, 4.3 assists and 4.3 rebounds per game.

Brandon Rush, who has stepped into the starting lineup for the injured LaVine, will he tagged with the task of slowing down Waiters on Monday.

Rush, in his first season with the Wolves, has averaged 3.2 points and 1.5 rebounds in a limited role coming off the bench this season. In his three starts this season, he is averaging 9.3 points, three rebounds, 1.3 assists, 1.7 steals and 1.7 blocks.

Waiters, in his first season with the Heat, is averaging 15.6 points, 4.1 assists and 3.5 rebounds this season.

Injuries

Miami: Rodney McGruder (illness) is questionable. Bosh (blood clot), Josh McRoberts (foot), Josh Richardson (foot) and Justise Winslow (shoulder) are out.

Minnesota: Kris Dunn (sore right hand) is questionable. LaVine (knee), Adreian Payne (illness) and Nikola Pekovic (ankle) are out.

Projected Starters 

Miami: PG – Dragic, SG – Waiters, SF – McGruder, PF – Babbitt, C - Whiteside

Minnesota: PG – Rubio, SG – Rush, SF – Wiggins, PF – Dieng, C – Towns

 

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