2014 Minnesota Timberwolves Predictions and NBA Futures Odds
by George Monroy - 10/7/2014
The Minnesota Timberwolves put themselves in a precarious situation two seasons ago by refusing to offer Kevin Love a maximum five-year contract and instead wanted to save the money to lock up Ricky Rubio long term. Minnesota signed Love to a four-year deal with an opt-out clause at the three-year mark. That frustrated the all-star forward, and he lost trust in Timberwolves management and eventually asked to be traded toward the end of last season.
Minnesota, however, landed in a best-case situation by trading Love to Cleveland for a potential superstar in Andrew Wiggins and 2013's No.1 draft pick, Anthony Bennett. The Timberwolves may not be a contender during the upcoming season, but they now have a foundation of talented players to build on and may be one of the most exciting teams in the NBA. Let's take a closer look at Minnesota's 2014 futures odds with predictions and analysis. All odds come from Sportsbook.ag
2014 Minnesota Timberwolves Betting Story Lines
Pairing Rubio with Wiggins in an offense that already loves to move the ball up and down the court has the potential to be spectacular. Minnesota may very well be the league-pass guilty pleasure for NBA junkies and bettors throughout the season even if it does not manage to win many games. The organization lost a superstar over the summer but is probably better off talent-wise heading into the new season.
The Timberwolves will definitely struggle to begin the year as they try to find playing time for their young players and adapt to a new coach in Flip Saunders. There may be little expectation for the team over the next season or two, which could help Wiggins and Bennett grow into form with no pressure or outside distractions. Minnesota's success this season will, however, will rest on the shoulders of fourth-year point guard Rubio.
The Spaniard has been spectacular handing the ball through the early part of his NBA career, but he continues to struggle on the offensive end, averaging only 9.5 points per game and shooting below 40 percent last year. If Rubio can improve on the offensive end then the Timberwolves could turn into a playoff threat.
2014 Minnesota Timberwolves Additions and Departures
Key Additions: Andrew Wiggins, Mo Williams, Anthony Bennett
Key Departures: Kevin Love, Rick Adelman (coach)
Situations are rare when an organization can lose a blue-chip player like Love and still come out ahead talent-wise-which is exactly what happened in Minnesota. The squad had no leverage in its trade talks with Cleveland and still managed to fleece the Cavaliers for the last two No.1 picks when management probably would have taken half of what they originally wanted.
Bennett struggled during his rookie year and already had fans and experts breaking out the "bust" label 40 games into his career. The center was not as dominant as most people would have liked, but he is still only in his second season in the NBA and could turn into an excellent player in years to come.
2014 Minnesota Timberwolves Futures Odds
NBA Title Odds: +50000 (third worst)
Western Conference Odds: +25000 (second worst)
Division Odds: +10000 (last)
Win Total: O/U 26 wins
Rookie of the Year Odds: Andrew Wiggins +375
Coach of the Year Odds: Flip Saunders +20000
Minnesota's title and division odds are a long shot without much of a chance at cashing for a profit. The team is not good enough to win its division, the Western Conference or an NBA title-and that is simply the truth. The NBA does not work the way other sports do. The Timberwolves do have value on their win totals, Rookie of the Year and Coach of the Year odds. Last season the team won 40 games and should be able to stay in the 30-win range. Most experts seem to be undervaluing Wiggins and Bennett as well as underestimating Rubio's impact running the team from the point guard position.
Expect Minnesota to go "over" 26 games this season. Most of the preseason rookie hype has been transferred to Jabari Parker, but Wiggins is still the most talented rookie of the incoming class and will be expected to play an integral part in Minnesota's offense right away. A Wiggins Rookie of the Year award is probably the strongest futures wager the team has to offer.
2014 Minnesota Timberwolves Predictions and Futures Odds Picks
Rookie of the Year: Andrew Wiggins
Minnesota's championship futures do not have any value for bettors and should not be wagered on. The team, however, will be one of the most underrated squads in the NBA and could be the best kept ATS secret in the league. Minnesota is young, talented and can score points in a hurry. Expect to team to be an underdog the majority of the time, and taking those points could be an excellent way to make a profit during the year.
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