Post-Butler Timberwolves Host Pelicans

Minnesota Timberwolves

Timberwolves Start the Post Jimmy Butler Era Against the Pelicans

Now that Jimmy Butler is being shipped out of town, can the Minnesota Timberwolves (5-9 SU, 6-8 ATS) get their season back on track? They’ll host the New Orleans Pelicans (7-6 SU, 6-7 ATS) this Wednesday at 8 PM ET on ESPN.

Newcomers Dario Saric and Robert Covington should be ready for the Timberwolves, provided the Butler trade with the Philadelphia 76ers is finalized on Monday and they pass their physicals as expected.

TV: 8 p.m. ET, ESPN

Line: Pelicans -1; O/U: 236

Both Saric and Covington could find themselves in Minnesota’s starting lineup on Wednesday. Saric would be an upgrade over PF Taj Gibson. Covington would take over for Butler at small forward. However, the Wolves rotation remains in flux with Jeff Teague (knee), Derrick Rose (face) and Andrew Wiggins (quadriceps) all listed as day-to-day.

The Pelicans have two of their own starters to worry about. PG Elfrid Payton and PF Nikola Mirotic are day-to-day with ankle injuries. Payton has been out since late October, but is likely to return this week.

Mirotic has missed one game and may be available on Wednesday after being seen at practice wearing an ankle brace. The Pelicans started the year at 4-0 SU and 3-1 ATS with their full lineup.

PREDICTION: Pelicans 120, Timberwolves 108

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