Preview: The banged-up Timberwolves will try to avoid their first six-game losing streak since late last season against a Rockets team on a six-game losing streak of its own and is playing on the second night of a back-to-back, after losing 105-95 at Indiana on Friday.
Players to watch: Wolves F Andrei Kirilenko has scored in double figures in four consecutive games, averaging 15.8 points in that stretch. G Luke Ridnour is coming off a season-high 21 points vs. the Clippers. F Derrick Williams has scored in double figures three games in a row. Rockets G James Harden entered Friday night averaging 26.3 points per game. He scored 15 of his game-high 30 points in the final 6 minutes, 19 seconds to lead Houston to an 87-84 victory on Dec. 26 at Target Center. C Omar Asik, averaging 10.3 points and 11.2 rebounds, had 17 rebounds that game and scored 22 points Friday.
Injuries: Wolves F Kevin Love (hand surgery), G Malcolm Lee (hip and knee surgery), G Brandon Roy (right knee), F Chase Budinger (right knee surgery) and C Nikola Pekovic (right quad contusion) are out. G Alexey Shved (left ankle) is doubtful. Houston reports no injuries, although F Royce White (suspension) is out.