The #1 seed Denver Nuggets will try again to close out their first round NBA playoff series against the Minnesota Timberwolves when the two teams meet Tuesday night in the Mile High city.
Tip-off is set 9:00 p.m. ET at Ball Arena where the Nuggets are -9.5 point favorites and a massive -450 on the moneyline. The Timberwolves are +360 on the ML while the total is 221.5. The numbers are courtesy of BetOnline.
Denver Nuggets (56-30, 3-1, #1 seed)
The Nuggets had a chance to sweep the series on Sunday night and nearly did it in overtime before falling 114-108. Minnesota survived despite another monster game from Nikola Jokic who had 43 points, 11 rebounds, six assists and two steals:
Nikola Jokic pours in 43 points in Game 4! This was his 18th 30+ point playoff game for Denver, matching Alex English’s long-held record 👏
MIN/DEN Game 5, Tuesday, 9pm/et, NBA TV pic.twitter.com/ppoAse2jU3
— NBA (@NBA) April 24, 2023
Minnesota Timberwolves (44-44, 1-3, #8 seed)
The Timberwolves still have a daunting task ahead of them. No NBA team has won a seven-game series after losing the first three games. A few teams have rallied to force a seventh game, including the 1994 Nuggets, but that’s as close as any team has come.
If the Timberwolves have a chance of extending the series, it rests on the shoulders of 21-year old Anthony Edwards. He has averaged 37.0 points since being held to 18 in Game 1 and sealed the victory Sunday with a 34- point performance. His late three sealed the deal for the T-Wolves:
TIMBERWOLVES LEAD BY 4 ON TNT! pic.twitter.com/4uAadAeD1w
— NBA (@NBA) April 24, 2023
Edwards has scored 30 or more points in half of his 10 career playoff games, and is only the second player to have five such games at age 21 or younger. LeBron James did it eight times, while Kobe Bryant pulled it off on four different occasions.
Mike Conley added 19 points for the T-Wolves but Karl-Anthony Towns had just 17 points before fouling out. KAT heard it from the Minnesota fans on Twitter:
Karl Anthony-Towns might just not be built for playoff basketball. If he gets into any sort of adversity, he starts slumping and doesn’t get active on defense and his body language is consistently bad if he’s not scoring
— Rishi Oza (@RishOza_) April 20, 2023
Karl Anthony Towns might be the worst defensive big in the entire Western Conference
— Swipa (@SwipaCam) April 22, 2023
Karl Anthony Towns when the Timberwolves ask him to go get a bucket pic.twitter.com/vdDJhFD6Yl
— Kristian (@sleptonzzz) April 22, 2023
Game 5 Outlook
Sunday’s 114-108 victory just postponed the inevitable for the Timberwolves.
Denver is determined not to make another trip to the Midwest in the series. Thus, they should be extremely focused at home.
They also should be realistic. The closest any team has come to sweeping through the postseason is losing just one game. That squad was the 2017 Golden State Warriors, who won their first 15 playoff games before losing.
Sorry Minnesota fans but the series comes to an end tonight.