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As we move beyond the busy Christmas period in the NBA, we now begin the run into the All-Star break and the second half of the season. In Saturday’s double header on ESPN, we get a look at 2 teams performing well taking on 2 teams struggling big time. First up it’s Kevin Love and the Cavs up against his old team in the Minnesota Timberwolves. The T’Wolves are sliding fast and will hope for a revival against their old mate K Love. Following that game we jump to the Staples Centre in California where the high-flying Oklahoma City Thunder visits Kobe on his farewell tour.

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CAVALIERS @ TIMBERWOLVES

SATURDAY 9 JANUARY, 11:00 AM (AEST) @ TARGET CENTER, MINNESOTA

  • The Timberwolves are sliding big time – they’ve lost their last 4 games and 16 of their last 20 – and hold a 12-24 record straight up including 5-14 at home. Of those 16 losses in their last 20, they’ve only covered the spread twice. Over the season, they hold a 14-21-1 record against the line.
  • After back to back losses on Christmas and Boxing Day, the Cavs have now won 5 straight. They hold a 24-9 record (9-8 away) but have only covered the line in 14 of their 33 games. In away games, they’ve only covered the line 6 times and haven’t done so in their previous 4 road games.
  • The Timberwolves are averaging 98.9PPG this season, dropping to 96.6 when at home, and have given up 102.2PPG across the year. Their over/under record is fairly evenly split at 17-18-1 (7-12 at home) and they’ve alternated over/under through their last 6 games.
  • Cleveland average 101.1PPG over the whole year, but drop to 97.8PPG when on the road. The Cavs have only allowed an impressive 95.3PPG (3rd best in the league), leading them to a 15-18 over/under record for the year, including 6-11 away.

THUNDER @ LAKERS

SUNDAY 11 JANUARY, 13:30 PM (AEST) @ STAPLES CENTRE, CALIFORNIA

  • The Lakers have won 3 of their last 4 to now sit at 8-28 for the season, including 4-10 at home. They’ve only covered the line in 15 of their 36 games (6-8 at home).
  • Since their loss to the Bulls on Christmas Day, the Thunder has now put together 5 wins in 6 games. Despite the victories, they have only covered the line in 5 of their last 7 to leave them with a 15-21 record against the line (6-8 on the road).
  • LA are the 3rd worst scoring team in the league, averaging just 96.4PPG, dropping to 96PPG at home. They concede an average of 105.8PPG (101.6 when at Staples Centre) and hold a 16-20 over/under record (4-10 at home). Their last 3 games have gone under.
  • Oklahoma are the 2nd best scoring team in the league at 108.6PPG, actually increasing to 109.6PPG when on the road. They’ve allowed 100.5PPG (101.5 on the road)and 6 of their last 7 games have gone over the total points market, leaving them with a 14-22 over/under record (5-9 on the road).