It was Business Time tonight. The Wolves were coming off of All-Star Break with excuses limited to the absences of Kevin Love and Chase Budinger. Ehh, I guess that’s my way of saying Andrei Kirilenko was back. Oh, and the opponent, Philadelphia, was as usual without their new, yet-to-play center, Andrew Bynum. The Sixers aren’t playoff bound. They aren’t that good. So yeah. It was Business Time. And the Wolves took care of business.
I don’t mean to skirt my game wrapping duties, but this’ll be brief. There just isn’t a whole lot that we don’t know about this ’12-13 group. Nik Pekovic? A beast. 27 points, 18 rebounds, and by far the game’s MVP. (PAY THE MAN.) Kirilenko was phenomenal on defense. Evan Turner embarrassed himself trying to take AK47 off the dribble. Pockets were picked. Ricky drew fouls. He shot 12 free throws compared to just 4 field goals. Scoring efficiency numb#rs will forever hide the flaws in Rubio’s stroke. He was off with his passing tonight, but on the whole played a nice game. (11 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists, 6 turnovers, 3 steals).
Alexey Shved continues to struggle a little bit. He had 6 points on 2-9 shooting with just 1 assist. Sometimes, he drives in the lane and is clearly looking for a whistle that doesn’t come after a little contact. Is he less adept than Ricky at drawing contact in ways that bait officials? I honestly don’t know. It’s something to watch for in the rest of the season. Shved has so much athleticism that I’m glad he’s being more assertive, but there needs to be some method to the madness when he goes to the hole.
What else? Ugly game, tons of free throws. Both teams were in the bonus A LOT, tonight. Nice to get a win, on to the next one. Which, uhh, won’t be easy. At Oklahoma City on Friday night, on ESPN. Let’s do it.
Season Record: 20-31