Cheering for Other Teams

This feels like Christmas Morning.  I don’t mean that figuratively–I mean that it literally feels like December 25, 2011, when the NBA season was about to kick off with a full slate of great games on national TV.  In a couple of hours, the NBA Playoffs begin when the Bulls host the Sixers. 

If you’re a fan of the Timberwolves and the NBA more generally, then you’re accustomed to finding somebody else to cheer for in postseason play.  I don’t think I’m unique in thinking that sporting events are more fun to watch when you’ve got a rooting interest.  Which brings me to my dilemma (not really a dilemma, but go with it): I need to figure out exactly who I’m cheering for this year.  In every year since 2006 my “playoffs team” has been the LA Lakers.  That sounds like being a front-running douchebag, except it began with me loving the challenge of Kobe’s to win without Shaq.  If you remember the 2006 Lakers, you understand that cheering for Smush Parker’s team was not front running in any proper sense of the term.  Setting aside Kobe’s share of blame for Shaq’s departure (I think as more time passes, Shaq looks worse and worse as a teammate and person, but whatever–that’s another conversation) I loved watching Kobe play and I loved arguing to people that Kobe was doing some things that might have challenged Michael Jordan’s legacy.  Those two things were enough to give me my “playoffs team.”  When they added Pau, I was excited only because I wanted to see Kobe back in the title conversation.  Plus, Pau wasn’t as incredible as Shaq was, so Kobe finally had the chance to win titles as “the guy.”

An additional layer was added to my playoffs priority list when the evil Celtics upset the Lakers in 2008.  From that point forward, I had to cheer for the Lakers and cheer against the Celtics.  That lasted up until “The Decision.”  When LeBron took his talents to South Beach I now had the Lakers as my team to cheer for, and the Heat to cheer against, with Boston lingering as a pesky veteran squad that can’t be entirely left out of “who I need to hate” conversations.  And finally, I adopted Derrick Rose as my “guy to cheer for in the playoffs once Kobe gets too old.”  I loved watching Rose rip apart the 2008 March Madness and have since admired the humility he’s shown since becoming a real superstar.  Yeah, he’s one of the most boring personalities in sports, but sometimes his simple comments (as in his MVP speech — see toward the end of clip) aren’t totally cliche’d and for whatever reason make him more likeable to me than some of his rivals.  So liking D-Rose has meant cheering for his Bulls.

But I think it’s time to reshuffle the deck.  Kobe has been thoroughly not fun to watch this year.  He’s an aging ball hog who seems to lack awareness of his new shortcomings.  While he has more game right now than Duncan or Garnett, he’s infinitely-less willing to accept the aging process, and I mostly mean that in a bad way.  He’s always been petulant, but it didn’t bother me so much when his abilities were top-notch.  I’d take some satisfaction in Kobe getting #6, but that would have more to do with old and stale arguments I’ve had than it would in-the-moment enjoyment of the basketball being played.  So I don’t really care to see the Lakers win these playoffs.  I also don’t expect them to but that’s not the focal point here.

Before I delve into who I will cheer for and against in the playoffs, I’ll list a few important factors to consider when making such an important decision.

  • Who do you enjoy watching?

The reason that MJ, Kobe, and LeBron have so many fans is pretty simple: They are (or were) the most entertaining players in the world.  When elite skills are paired with jaw-dropping athleticism, people seem to get excited.  But elite wing slashers are only one type of entertaining baller.  Dirk, Carmelo and Durant can get their jumper going in a way that baffles the mind of us mere mortals.  There’s nothing quite like seeing a jumpshooter lose his mind for a few minutes.  One of the only playoff games I’ve ever attended was this one.  It wasn’t fun watching the Wolves get swept, but OH MY GOD Dirk was insanely good.  He’s been doing stuff like that ever since, as Miami found out last June.  How about elite passing?  Steve Nash, LeBron James, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Ricky Rubio… they see things on the basketball floor that others don’t.  Great defense can be fun to watch, but you’re treading into “uber NBA geek” territory when you can appreciate Taj Gibson’s ability to shut it down in the post.  (If you’re reading, you very well might be there.)  The “fun to watch” factor has consistently hurt the Spurs in their four championship pursuits.  Yeah they spread the floor, run a mean high ball screen and play the most-principled defense outside of Chicago.  But even when Parker or Duncan has it going, they aren’t as fun as some other great teams.  Popovich interviews help give them some much-needed personality, but probably not enough to garner much fan interest outside of San Anton’.

  • Who do you (think that you) like?

Which team has a player or two that you feel good cheering for?  Whether they’ve got an inspiring background story, a personal struggle that warrants some fan support, or just seem like a genuinely good dude, some players are worth cheering for, for reasons unrelated to their hoop skills.  KG was one of these guys when he went to Boston.  People admired his work ethic and loyalty to a small market and wanted him to get that ring.  Steve Nash is widely, and I think appropriately, considered a great teammate and cool person.  On a smaller scale, Corey Brewer is pretty damn easy to cheer for when you see his work ethic on display and that ridiculous smile that never leaves his face.  Brew’s one of the few NBA players that I’ve met and he was as nice to a random NBA geek as you’d probably expect.  The “who do you like?” factor hurts Kobe, post-Decision LeBron, and Dwight Howard.  It should have hurt Michael Jordan, but didn’t seem to.

  • Who can prove you right?

Whether you sit in barber shops or comment on Canis Hoopus, basketball arguments are as old as the game itself.  There’s an inevitable sense of satisfaction when you’ve debated one player over another and then watched your guy prevail on the big stage.  It sounds stupid, but I don’t think I’m the only one who cheers this way, at least to an extent.  It formed a big part of my Kobe fandom.  Barely old enough to legally drink a beer, he was scoring 28 a game and winning rings.  I thought it reasonable to wonder if he was doing stuff we hadn’t seen before.  Others thought I was an idiot.  Arguments ensued.  I found myself cheering for Kobe.  If you talk hoops, whether it be on blogs or in conversation, you know what I mean.  This is part of the fandom equation.

With all of this in mind, let’s get to it.

I’ll start with the bottom seeds and move up:

8 – 76ers: Not good enough to matter.  Evan Turner can talk as much trash as he wants, but they ain’t beating the Bulls.  Though I do enjoy watching Jrue Holiday play defense.

8 – Jazz: Also not good enough, but I like the Jazz.  As some of you know, I have a long and storied history of being an AL JEFFERSON APOLOGIST.  I’ve felt some validation (in a pathetic, blogger sort of way) in his success with the Jazz.  Always loved watching Al play post, and will cheer for him  against the Spurs.

7 – Knicks: Hell yes.  Both Pat and I are HUGE Melo fans — not for the “seems like a really nice guy” factor but certainly for the other two.  When Melo gets it going, there isn’t a better scorer in the world.  He’s ridiculously-fun to watch light it up.  Also, I have argued and continued to argue that he’s one of the best in the world.  Recent weeks have been fun after a more-than-rough patch under Mike D’Antoni.

7 – Mavs: Not overly interested in this year’s Mavs.  I like Dirk and Jet enough, but they won it last year and haven’t seemed as invested in trying to repeat as I would’ve liked to see.  Losing Chandler was huge.  I suppose, whether Cuban admits it or not, they’re looking at this summer’s free agency.  Cough, Deron, cough.

6 – Magic: Irrelevant without Dwight.

6 – Nuggets: They absolutely kill the “fun to watch” and “likeable” factors.  Denver runs the floor, passes the ball and shoots it really well.  And KENNETH FARIED.  Also, George Karl is a cancer survivor who came out of the Melodrama about as well as could ever have been imagined.  Barkley predicted that Denver will upset the Lakers.  I might agree with him.  Gallinari might go off without Artest to check him.

5 – Hawks: Yawn. I don’t care.

5 – LA Clippers: I predicted them to make the Finals without fully appreciating how bad of a coach Vinny is.  But the Clips have come around in recent weeks (in part due to a Randy Foye surge) and are a fringe title contender.  I’m not a CP3 guy (recognize he’s one of the greats; just don’t really like cheering for him–mostly because I do like cheering for Deron and Rose and, like I mentioned above, arguments ensue) but I could get behind the Clips if, say, they matched up with Miami or Boston in the Finals.  But that isn’t saying much — I hate Miami and Boston.  So I guess I’m not really cheering for the Clippers.  I hope Memphis beats them in Round 1.

4 – Celtics: No.  Though there is a Celtic that I do like (Avery Bradley).  I like arguing that Rajon Rondo is really fucking overrated and I’ll continue to do that and enjoy any time that he loses.  I respect the C’s.  Most of them anyway.  But I only cheer for them against Miami and I don’t expect that matchup to surface this year.

4 – Grizzlies: Love the Grizz.  I like Z-Bo (as a player) and Marc Gasol, and I love how they play defense.  Their coach, Lionel Hollins, seems to be one of the very best in the league.  Hell, maybe THE best in the league.  The Grizzlies make lots of stupid front office decisions but they’re an actual title contender.  I think I want the Grizzlies to win the West.

3 – Pacers: Similar to Grizzlies.  They play really hard and really physical.  Paul George is becoming better than an “up and comer.”  I think he’s already here.  Roy Hibbert is pretty smooth in the post.  Danny Granger is a chucker who sometimes is unstoppable.  I don’t like the Pacers as much as the Grizzlies but certainly look forward to their matchup with Miami in Round 2.

3 – LA Lakers: As I described above, I’m mostly done with the Lakers.  If they’re playing Miami or Boston in the Finals, I’ll be fully on board.  Otherwise, it’s time for somebody else.

2 – Heat: I hate the Heat less than I did last year.  But not much less.  I don’t like what LeBron, Wade and Bosh did to the NBA landscape and I don’t want them to be rewarded for it with a championship.  LeBron and Wade are two of the best playmakers in recent league history and they don’t need each other (Heat are something like 13-1 with LeBron/without Wade this year, for Christ’s sake.)  I’m not a particularly-big LeBron fan in the rooting sense, but I love watching the guy play.  He’s possibly the best player I’ve ever seen and he will eventually win a championship.  Maybe this year.  But I’d love to see that happen after the Big 3 is no longer in existence.

2 – Thunder: The Thunder are really fun to watch and seem like good guys.  Durant is unlike any player I’ve ever seen in how he goes about dominating games.  Westbrook is possibly the best athlete in the NBA and seems poised to break a backboard before his career is over with those ANGRY two-hand slams.  James Harden has Paul Pierce skills at age 22.  Serge Ibaka is a badass shot blocker.  The only really bad thing about the Thunder is that Kendrick Perkins plays for them.  He’s a tool.  But I can get behind this team.  They’re really good, really fun to watch and will probably play in the Finals. But…

1 – Bulls: Of serious contenders, this is my squad.  Rose is my current favorite player (well, other than Ricky) and as long as he is healthy (big “if”) they can win this title.  Chicago has an awesome coach who lives, breaths, eats and sleeps basketball.  Its front line is ridiculously good on defense.  Joakim Noah is an awesome guy to have on your side.  Chicago’s wing players are just plain exhilarating to watch.  Okay, that last one isn’t true.  But I really like the Bulls and want to see Rose win a title.

1 – Spurs: I like this Spurs team more than the old title winners, probably because I’m so amazed that they’re still doing this.  Tim Duncan is a basketball genius and Tony Parker is on the short list of most underrated players in the NBA.  But I can’t say I’m really cheering for the Spurs.  I’d rather watch OKC or Memphis lose to the Bulls in the Finals.

So that’s pretty much it.  In Round 1, I’m cheering loudest for the Knicks to believe in miracles and BEAT THE HEAT.  But I don’t expect that to happen.  I’d be more than happy if Chicago gets that job done.

Who do you got?



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12 responses to “Cheering for Other Teams

  1. Cynical Jason

    I couldn’t possibly hate a player more than I hate Kobe. I hated him from minute one when he Elwayed his way to the Lakers, and every season and rape and whine has just exacerbated my hatred of him. If he were playing a game of one-on-one with Osama bin Laden, I’d root for Osama.

    Plus, I generally root for underdogs.

  2. Brian J.

    Christmas Day indeed! Glad we got your rooting interests sorted out. Surprised that your new man-crush Novak didn’t get a mention, and somewhat less surprised that you forgot to mention the league leader in assists in your “elite passing” discussion. Here are my teams:

    8 – Jazz: I’ve always thought the Jazz were boring, but I’m really starting to like this team. Especially after they won a draft pick for us this year. Big Al seems like an all around nice guy and a hard worker, so I’ll be rooting for him in the first round. I also love when they go to the huge Jefferson-Millsap-Favors-Hayward-Harris line-up – just think it’s really unique and exciting things happen sometimes. Favors has looked like a beast a couple of times. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem like they have much of a chance.

    8 – 76ers: This team rubs me the wrong way for some reason, though I do like Iggy (and wouldn’t mind him in a Wolves uni). Evan Turner seems like an ok guy I guess, but I’ve never understood why people still see so much potential in him. A few months ago when the C’s were struggling Bill Simmons advocated for a trade that was basically Rondo for Turner, which I have to imagine even non-Rondo fanatics would find a bit ridiculous. Turner cemented my dislike of him, however, when he had about a 4-game stretch putting up some eye-popping fantasy numbers – just long enough for me to grab him off the wire, at which point he reverted to being a far below-average fantasy player. Thad Young did his best to compensate for Turner’s fantasy shortcomings, but man did Turner put a dent in my fantasy season.

    7 – Knicks: I can’t really get behind this Knicks squad, even though I admit they are very exciting and will be tuning in to most of their games. I’ve never been able to cheer for Carmelo – I’d be the first to concede that he is a jaw-dropping talent on the offensive end, but he checks out of too many games, and doesn’t always give you the effort he could. Plus he seems like kind of a dick – the whole situation in Denver really soured me on Melo. That said, I will definitely be cheering for NY over Miami.

    7 – Mavs: Agree on the Mavs – not too interested one way or another. I don’t see them being able to deal with the athleticism of OKC in the first round. Kind of sad that they’ve fallen so far this year. I like Dirk and JET, and had a great time watching them take out the Heat last year, so I wouldn’t mind if they put together a little run. Just don’t see it happening.

    6 – Magic: Dislike this team. I’d be a little interested in seeing them make some noise without Dwight, mostly because I think Dwight is the part of this team that I like the least, but I don’t think it’ll happen. Ryan Anderson is an interesting player, and I’ve always liked J-Rich, but the talent just isn’t there sans-Dwight.

    6 – Nuggets: I used to hate the Melo Nuggets because of their clash with the Wolves back in KG’s heyday. I went to a couple of first round playoff games in 2004, and I just remember that whole team seeming like a bunch of tools. Public enemy number one was Jon Barry, who seemed to revel in the Target Center’s collective contempt for him. I still dislike seeing him on TV. This is an entirely different team though, and I agree that they are pretty like-able. They play a really fun style of basketball, and I like the fact that they don’t really have a superstar. Wouldn’t mind seeing them knock off the Lakeshow.

    5 – Hawks: Have to lose, since they are playing the C’s. I didn’t really like this team anyways, but now I will definitely be cheering against them. J-Smoove has always seemed like kind of a whiny guy with an attitude to me. Joe Johnson is alright, but definitely not a franchise player – it feels like he managed to cheat the system somehow to get that massive contract of his. Hard to cheer for that guy.

    5 – Clips: I thought I would love the Clips coming into this season. Blake was so fun to watch, and I loved the idea of CP3 – I always kind of considered him the best pg in the league, especially after he almost took out the Lakers on his own in last year’s playoffs. But other than that series, I guess I’d never really gotten a chance to watch CP3 or get a feel for his personality. The Clips constant presence on national TV has revealed CP3 to be one of the biggest whiners I have ever seen. Seems to be rubbing off on Blake too. The whole Pau Gasol pat-on-the-head episode rubbed me the wrong way too – CP3 really freaked out, and completely overreacted to a meaningless (hell, even friendly) gesture from one of the classier players in the league. No thanks, go Memphis.

    4 – Boston: This, obviously, is my team. I didn’t think they’d be here this year, but I’m glad they have at least this one more chance to make some noise. Sounds like there are a lot of little nagging injuries that worry me a little bit – those can wear on old guys. No idea what is going on with Ray’s ankles, but they will need him at some point during this series. As good as Avery has been recently, the C’s bench is way too shallow without Ray. I like the C’s chances less the more the minutes for Keyon and Sasha increase. I think they can take Atlanta with or without Ray in the first round, but they’d need a full roster to challenge Chicago in the second round. I really, really hope we get Boston-Chicago in the second round though – huge entertainment potential.

    4 – Memphis: I like this Grizz team. Big Lionel Hollins fan, big Z-Bo fan (love his story finding a home in Memphis, having been such a drifter for a while), big Gasol fan. I also really enjoy watching Trick or Treat Tony go balls-to-the-wall on defense – I know Conley’s not a bad defender himself, but I hope that Tony sees significant time on CP3. Plus, despite what Simmons will tell you, I still think Tony has retained the “Trick” aspect of his nickname – Cory Brewer-like potential for wild, out of control drives and badly-bricked lay-ups that make you do a double-take and question whether that really just happened. Really like their aggressive style of defense too.

    3 – Lakers: I almost always root against the Lakers, but I actually don’t mind this squad as much. It’s interesting to see Kobe in this role as a fading gunner – in a kind of romanticized way, it would make for a good story if he catches fire. I’m a big Pau Gasol fan, and I think Matt Barnes is underrated. The biggest negative on this team is that gigantic immature dick they start at center. I cannot stand Bynum – I dislike his ugly style of overpowering play almost as much as I dislike his personality. If he gets injured again, I’d consider rooting for the Lakers.

    3 – Pacers: Haven’t gotten to see much of the Pacers this year, but I’m kind of apathetic about them. Their first round match-up with Orlando is the one I am least interested in. I’m somewhat surprised that they’ve managed to do as well as they have – I guess I’ve always thought of Granger as being a bit overrated, and I think Hibbert falls into that category sometimes too. Paul George intrigues me, I just wish he was on the Wolves.

    2 – Miami: Miami is probably my least favorite team in the playoffs. Partly due to the Decision, but more owing to their arrogant, entitled personalities and swagger (which I guess goes hand-in-hand with the whole Decision bit). I never want to see them win a championship with this Decision-era team, and I will cheer against them in every series. That said, I do enjoy watching Lebron play, and his personality bothers me somewhat less than the rest of them. It’s a toss-up between Mario Chalmers and Wade for my least favorite player in the league. Convenient that they’re both on the same team, makes rooting against them easier.

    2 – OKC: The Thunder are probably my third favorite team in the league, behind the Wolves and the C’s. How can you not love these guys? Durant is one of the most like-able, humble superstars in recent memory, and the whole team seems to have an enviable sense of camaraderie. I’m less a fan of Westbrook’s game – wish he was a little more efficient, a little less TO-prone – but I do enjoy his huge throwdowns at the rim. James Harden is quickly becoming one of my favorite players in the league. I love guys with the old-man sneaky game, a la Pierce and Cassell, maybe because it somewhat resembles my own style of play. I can identify with players who play to strengths based on something other than sheer-athleticism, and I appreciate the types of skills it takes. In some ways that style of play seems even more artful than a jaw-dropping first step or rim-rocking throw down. Also, count me in as an Ibaka fan – any guy who registers a triple double with blocks is a fun guy to watch and a good guy to have on your team. And since Perk was part of the C’s for so long, I don’t mind him either – though I can see how he’d be annoying if he wasn’t on your team, and I don’t think he actually contributes much to OKC. I’ll be cheering for these guys, but I don’t necessarily expect them to win it this year.

    1 – Spurs: I am blown away by how good this Spurs team has been in the regular season. Pop is my coach of the year. Somehow he finds value in almost any player, and it is his ability to make them productive that allows the Spurs to stay successful with pieces like Gary Neal and Dejuan Blair. I’ve always really respected Duncan’s style of play, even if it’s not the most entertaining thing to watch. I wouldn’t mind seeing these guys make a run from a legacy perspective either. One more championship would put the cap on quite an impressive stretch. They are definite underdogs in these playoffs though, number one seed notwithstanding, and I just don’t see them pulling it off.

    1 – Chicago: I can’t decide how I feel about this Chicago team – equal parts good and bad. I love the Thibs element of this team – he’s a C’s guy too, and, along with Rose’s emergence, really transformed the Bulls into a contender. I love Rose’s demeanor and attitude – when he first came into the league I thought he was another prima donna thug, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. It’s easy to cheer for guys with his level of humility and leadership qualities. That said, for some reason I don’t love his style of play. Obviously he’s an amazing talent, but something about his hectic, careening drives to the rim just don’t do it for me. I can’t put my finger on it, but something about his game just seems less graceful and kind of frantic. I’d still cheer for him over most guys though, and I’d love to see a Rose-Rondo match-up in the second round. The bigger problem I have with this team is their front line. Never really liked Carlos Boozer, particularly the way he handled himself in leaving the Cavs. And Noah is one of those guys who drives you nuts unless he’s on your team. I am, however, a huge Taj Gibson fan ever since this happened:

    In any event, really excited to watch some great match-ups. Every series, except maybe Pacers-Magic, has something to look forward to. Hope the Wolves can get here next year. For now though, GO CELTICS!

    • Brian J encapsulated my feelings about the Bulls. I respect them, but I just don’t like them–and not because of the “threat” they pose to teams I prefer. (I’d also like to see the Celtics come out of the East. My second choice would be the Pacers; the Heat would be third.) On the Bulls: Thibs is great, Noah/Gibson are intriguing, and Rose is one of the best. No argument here. But I couldn’t agree more with Brian’s take on Rose. He just isn’t very fun to watch–not for my tastes. You still see a lot of deer-in-headlights moments, and he lacks the calm confidence of CP3 or Deron Williams and the violent athleticism of Westbrook. (Which isn’t to say he isn’t better than Westbrook–I think he is.) You can’t really get behind a team you don’t enjoy watching, and so I’m not pulling for the Bulls. I tend to prefer underdogs and their stories–whether they’re about hardworking good-guys like Brewer and the Nuggets or the redemption of misunderstood villains like Z-Bo, Gil Arenas, or Latrell Sprewell (Knicks vintage).

    • Brian,

      You hadn’t commented in a while — I knew a good C’s-bashing would bring you back.

      As for comparing ourselves and our games to NBA players, I like to think of myself as a washed-up Rasheed Wallace. What do you think?

      • Brian J.

        Yeah, gotta jump in to defend the C’s from time to time. Plus commenting is a good way to put off studying for law school finals.

        I love the ‘Sheed comparison – both a couple of long-range bombers who, despite their relative height advantages, are none too eager to mix it up inside. Even washed up Sheed made some valuable contributions for the Celts in the playoffs – it just took him the entire regular season to get into shape. Hard to overstate the importance of a well-timed long range three pointer in a tight playoff game, and ‘Sheed definitely hit a couple of big ones. You’ve got significantly better handles though, and ‘Sheed was probably a better post defender, even in his old age. Otherwise the comparison is eerily accurate.

        I’ve always like to think of my style as a sort of Paul Pierce, Sam Cassell, grizzled old-man’s game. Solid, but not spectacular three point shooting (though Pierce has really become quite good from deep in the last couple of years), but really thrives on the mid-range jumper and relies on herky-jerky, relatively slow moves to create space. Our own J.J. Barea and James Harden are also employers of this style of play. Your thoughts?

        • @Brian J. I’d put Ginobili and Roy in that same category. (Which is one of the reasons I thought Roy would end up coming back from his knee problems–he didn’t need athleticism to do what he was doing. I guess the pain was just too bad.) It’s amazing Barea can pull it off at 5’9”, though by the end of the season I was wishing he were less ball dominant.

          Sadly, I was unathletic (but tall and skilled) enough as an 18-year old that it made sense for me to model my game *back then* on late-1990s Sheed. Now that I’m older, and practice less, and don’t shoot it as consistently as I did then, I have to be more conservative. So now I try to draw lessons from Duncan (i.e., focusing on angles off the block to set up easy 16 foot bank shots, getting to the right spot on the block to set up easy jump hooks, and having the humility to know that if I fail in doing either of those things, that I should start thinking about how to find the right guy–and fast–if I get an interior pass.)

        • Since my three main objectives in a typical noonball game are:
          * Avoid a broken nose (and thus be careful in the paint)
          * Don’t expend too much energy
          * Shoot unnecessarily-long three pointers
          I’m comfortable with a late-career Sheed comp.

          In other news, this post looks pretty silly after Rose and Shumpert wrecked their knees and the Knicks got annihilated.

  3. Dave A.

    Andy, you just summarized the Wolves’ defense and season. “Avoid a broken nose, don’t expend too much energy, and shoot unnecessarily-long three pointers.” Wolves played “noonball” after Love sent down. After the last game, Coach called it “a lack of work ethic” but he really wanted to call them “chicken shit”. Which is worse, laziness or a lack of courage? Either way, Coach will find tough guys who go after the ball with two hands and contest layups and dunks. Finding quality wing players is important but we first need tough guys who are less concerned about their nose. Andy, any thoughts on who the Wolves will drop and add? My dream has KG retiring in a Wolves’ uniform.

    • Pretty hard to predict what the Wolves will do, other than that it will probably be a lot more roster turnover, this time with Adelman’s voice calling more of the shots. Maybe he’ll try to bring back a player or two that he’s had success with. Kevin Martin’s name gets mentioned this way.

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