Houston Rockets vs. Minnesota Timberwolves - 4/15/18 NBA Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Nightmare Harden Vol 2

Nightmare Harden Vol 2

Jimmy Butler had no interest in divulging any information regarding the wrap he had on his wrist prior to Game 1 of the playoffs on Sunday.

Game 1 is set for 8 p.m. Sunday in Houston and can be heard on WCCO Radio 830 AM.

Minnesota scored four straight points to get within 3 with about 30 seconds left. Houston trailed by eight at the half and by 16 after three quarters to put the game away.

When you take a closer look at Harden's numbers, they can become even more eye-popping.

The likely 2017-18 Most Valuable Player torched Minnesota down the stretch. The next possession, he fed Clint Capela with an easy alley oop, an explanation mark on the Rockets' big run.

The Minnesota Timberwolves broke the longest current playoff drought in the National Basketball Association this past Wednesday, ending a 13-year absence with a 112-106 overtime victory over the Denver Nuggets. They have the odds-on favorite for the MVP, James Harden, leading the league in points and third in assists.

This isn't going to be a list of reasons why the Timerbwolves are going to knock off Houston in the first round because we can't, in good conscience, tell you that's going to happen.

The Wolves are hung tough, and had a chance to tie the game in the closing seconds, but the Rockets escaped with a three-point win.

This is Towns' first time playing in the playoffs so he'll have to get used to a more intense game and playing on a bigger stage than he's ever seen. He got off to a great start, and it continued all game long, as he finished with 27 points and 10 rebounds. This is going to be as much about his teammates getting him the ball as it is anything Towns can do, but the best chance Minnesota has at slowing the Rockets down is feeding Towns, giving him high percentage looks and kicking the ball out to open shooters rather than playing iso-ball or settling for contested jumpers on the perimeter. While his contributions are welcomed by the Wolves, they're not enough.

Minnesota, dominated by the Rockets during the four-game regular season series, led 86-85 on two free throws from Jamal Crawford (15 points) with 6:49 remaining.

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