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December 13, 2016

There is one pick tonight.
 

Take Minnesota Timberwolves +7 spread against Chicago Bulls for 3% of the bankroll.

Tom Thibodeau returns to Chicago where he guided the Bulls to the postseason in each of the five years he was at helm! Given his competitive nature, he'll no doubt have his troops ready for the challenge ahead. The Timberwolves have had a slow start to the season but are a highly talented squad and capable of playing much better. It's not uncommon for a new coach to need time before his team adapts to his particular philosohpies. That is what's going on in Minnesota right now and in our opinion, they are better than their current record suggests. Their failures in the first 24 games of the season has them working hard and heading in the right direction. Sometimes a little bit of adversity is exactly what a young team needs to improve. We believe the young Wolves have learned some valuable lessons in the first part of the season and will be playing better from here on. And yet with their poor record and inability to cover spreads thus far, they are currently undervalued and are being spotted more points than they should be! This is therefore a great time to back them before the market catches up.

The Bulls, on the other hand, are a bit over-rated right now due to some impressive recent wins. Let's not forget that some Chicago players have had a bad tendency to play up and down to the level of their competition. They 'get up' for big games but perform poorly against the weaker ones. They recently handed San Antonio Spurs their first road loss of the season! While that sounds admirable, it is exactly the type of performance that has often been followed up by a poor one under Fred Hoiberg. This Bulls team is relatively inconsistent and while they added another W against Miami after the Spurs win, we're not reading too much in to that. That's because, 'that' was another big game for them given that they were facing Dwyane Wade's old club. Now after two important wins, it'll be interesting to see how they fare against the lowly Timberwolves.

Unlike Chicago, Minnesota has lost 4 in a row and is in 'bounce-back' mode. They are determined to walk out victorious and will be the hungrier team. They do have the talent to cause matchup problems for most teams and the Bulls are no different as the size and athleticism of Karl-Anthony Towns alone can give them fits. Robin Lopez and Taj Gibson are decent defenders but overall  they are no match for KAT and Towns may well have another big game. He may not be alone either. Zach LaVine and Andrew Wiggins are averaging over 20 points per game and veteran PG Ricky Rubio knows how to spread the ball around.

Rajon Rondo tweaked his angle in Monday's practice and may or may not play tonight. He's officially a 'game-time' decision but while we do expect him to suit up and be on the court, he's unlikely to be 100% healthy. Keep in mind, he has put up some very pedestrian numbers this season with his new team, including last time out against the Heat even when he has been fully healthy! Rubio is an under-rated playmaker and might just get a bunch of assists if Rondo can't contain him defensively. The value is with the capable underdogs in this spot as we believe Minnesota can challenge for the outright win. We'll gladly take the 7 precious points knowing they may come into play in a contest that could go either way.




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