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Wolves have no room for error in final 13 games

Minnesota went from 6th to 4th and back to 6th Tuesday night.
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Tuesday night's slip-n-slide through the Western Conference standings was telling for the Timberwolves and the rest of the teams competing for a playoff spot.

Minnesota beat the Wizards to improve to 40-29, and immediately after their win they were in fourth place. Less than a couple of hours later they were back down to sixth. That's how tight things are in the West. 

With just 13 games to go, the Wolves cannot afford many slip ups, meaning they've got to take care of business and win the games they're supposed to win. 

Here's the rest of the schedule. Games we think they should win are in bold

  • Mar. 17: @ San Antonio
  • Mar. 18: vs. Houston
  • Mar. 20: vs. L.A. Clippers
  • Mar. 23:@ New York
  • Mar. 24: @ Philadelphia
  • Mar. 26: vs. Memphis
  • Mar. 28: vs. Atlanta
  • Mar. 30: @ Dallas
  • Apr. 1: vs. Utah
  • Apr. 5: @ Denver
  • Apr. 6: @ L.A. Lakers
  • Apr. 9: vs. Memphis
  • Apr. 11: vs. Denver

This means going 6-1 at home and 3-3 on the road, which would result in a 49-win season. 

Games against the Spurs, Clippers and Nuggets carry the most weight since they're the teams breathing down Minnesota's neck.

Theoretically, since the current 8-seed, Denver, owns a winning percentage of .559, any team in the West that hopes to make the playoffs needs to win at least 46 games, which is what Denver is on pace to do. Minnesota's current pace is 47 wins. 

Meanwhile, it'll be important to avoid panicking if the Wolves get swept by the Spurs and Rockets in a back-to-back this weekend. Getting swept could push the Wolves out of the playoff race, but their schedule down the stretch is favorable for a comeback if necessary. 

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