NBA Playoffs: Breakding down the Rockets vs. Timberwolves series

Nightmare Harden Vol 2

Timberwolves Feel Ready For First Postseason Appearance In 14 Years

While it's fair to say that the Rockets had most teams' numbers this season, the fact remains that it's hard to argue with a sweep.

James Harden scored only 10 points in the January game, but he was returning from missing seven games with an injury.

Minnesota hasn't made the playoffs since 2003-2004, when they lost to the Lakers in the Western Conference Finals. Chris Paul reached the postseason nine previous times in his career.

While the Wolves may feel a desire to reflect on their accomplishment, the real work begins Sunday night, when they head south to face the team with the best record in the National Basketball Association, the Houston Rockets. The Rockets shot 37.8 percent from the field and hit 13 of 46 three point attempts.

The Timberwolves finished 23rd in defensive efficiency during the regular season, so any expectation that they might lock down the Rockets this series is foolhardy.

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City's other two Premier League triumphs, in 2012 and '14, were sealed on the final day. My last Premier League title was not 20 years ago, it was three years ago.

That gives Jimmy Butler - who was inactive for one game vs. Houston and was hurt during another - more time to rest and recover after his late-season comeback. Jimmy Butler led the Timberwolves with 31 points in the win. I'm not saying the traditional big man is a relic but it's not something that's necessarily needed to have a successful team in the Association. But it wouldn't stun me if this series goes six games or more.

James Harden had himself a game in Houston, piling on 44 points to lead the Rockets to a 104-101 Game 1 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Wolves will have to prevent the Rockets from getting in a groove from downtown.

The Rockets possess a bevy of players with long playoff resumes, while two of the Wolves' best players in Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns will experience the playoffs for the very first time. No chance. Or at least an infinitesimally small one. Unusual stat: Three of the wins were by exactly 18 points. Minnesota is 24 in rebounding with 42 boards a night and 18 in assists by dishing out 22.7 dimes per contest. For reference, that mark is well behind the Magic, which was last in the league at.756 percent. The Rockets are 15 in the league in field goal percentage, shooting 46 percent as a team.

For the Wolves to win this series, the defense suddenly has to transform into a top-five unit and the leaky rebounding has to stop.

Anderson averaged 18.1 FanDuel points in 26.1 minutes per game this season.

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