Monthly Archives: November 2013

INTEL REPORT: Wolves at Lakers (The Swaggy P Edition)

Swaggy P is gonna ball 'til he falls

Swaggy P is gonna ball ’til he falls

Tonight the 4-2 Timberwolves will be taking on the 3-4 Lakers in LaLa at the Staples Center. The game is at 9:30 P.M Eastern, 8:30 P.M. Central. I’ll be watching on League Pass.

Kobe Bryant won’t be walking onto that court. (Eds. Note: He might be limping onto the bench. The operative message is, he won’t be playing tonight against the Timberwolves.) But Nick Young will. Like Kobe Bryant, Nick Young is a shooting guard. Like Kobe Bryant, Nick Young gets up shots.

But Nick Young is not Kobe Bryant. He has more in common with Jordan Crawford and other NBA gunners, and former Philippine first lady Imelda Marcos. (It’s the shoes).

Imelda Marcos and her kicks

Swaggy P and his kicks

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The Warriors are really good. (Warriors 106, WOLVES 93)

The Warriors are really good.

That is the one-sentence summary of last night’s game at Target Center. I wasn’t necessarily expecting a Timberwolves win, but if you told me that Andrew Bogut would foul out in 16 minutes, and that Steph Curry would tweak his ankle and score just 5 points, I would’ve liked their chances. But the Warriors — for one night, anyway — proved that they’re much more than the Steph Curry Show. Despite the lackluster performances turned in by Bogut and Curry, the Dubs rolled to a 106-93 victory at Target Center that was mostly not in doubt through the fourth quarter.

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INTEL REPORT: Warriors at Timberwolves (The Klay Thompson Edition)

Klay Thompson has one of the sweetest shooting strokes in the NBA

Klay Thompson has one of the sweetest shooting strokes in the NBA

The 3-1 Golden State Warriors are in ‘Sota to take on the 3-1 Timberwolves tonight at Target Center. Tip is at 7 P.M. CST. You can see it on FSN or NBA League Pass.

The Dubs are the darlings of the NBA so far this season, and it’s easy to see why: They’re third in the League in points per game, and are first in assists per game. They have fun players in Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, who can fill it up from pretty much anywhere inside the 612 area code. Andre Iguodala makes big dunks, and–this is a first for the Warriors–defends well.  David Lee flows to the tune of about 20 & 10 nightly. Andrew Bogut isn’t Andris Biedrins. (Eds. Note: Bogut also belongs on that “Dark Alley” team that was occasionally referenced in Grantland’s NBA Preview marathon, with fellow toughs Lance Stephenson and David West, inter alia.)

The starting lineups should look like this:

PG – Ricky Rubio vs. Stephen Curry

SG – Kevin Martin vs. Klay Thompson

SF – Corey Brewer vs. Andre Iguodala

PF – Kevin Love vs. David Lee

C – Zod Pekovic vs. Andrew Bogut

Yes, it will be a high-scoring game.

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Photo Diary: A Road Trip to Quicken Loans Arena

quicken

Inside The Q

For the second straight season, Punch-Drunk Wolves attended a Timberwolves road game. Last year was easy: Pat lived in Washington D.C., where — you know — an NBA team plays. He moved to Pittsburgh in the off-season. While The Steel City has no professional basketball, it’s just a two-hour drive from Cleveland, where the Cavaliers play. Since we’re both outspoken fans of Kyrie Lee Irving, and predraft boosters of Anthony Bennett, it seemed only logical to plan a trip to see the Wolves play the Cavs at Quicken Loans Arena.

The following is a collection of photos I snapped of the journey. Continue reading

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Twofer: A Win at The Garden, on to Cleveland

kyrie

The Timberwolves travel to Cleveland tonight to face Kyrie Irving and the Cavaliers. Artwork by Holly Grimsrud (hollygrimsrudart.com)

Andy G: Last night, the Timberwolves beat the Knicks and improved their record to 3-0. This marks only the second time in 25 seasons of franchise existence that the team won its first three games. Setting aside what that statistic says about the past, it is a small, early accomplishment worth feeling good about on the season’s first Monday morning. An undefeated start is especially impressive considering that the Wolves faced Kevin Durant and Carmelo Anthony in consecutive matchups.

The Wolves won the game at the foul line, where they made 29 out of a whopping 38 attempts. (The Knicks only shot 13.) After a blowout first quarter of steals and pass-ahead assists to Brewer and Love, it was all about survival. Carmelo eventually started making shots and the Knicks cut the deficit to 2 with 4:48 to go. But Kevin Martin converted a technical foul free throw, followed it up with a three-pointer (his fifth of the night; he scored a wildly-efficient 30 points on 12 shots) and the game never got close again.

Patrick J, what’s up with the crazy free throw disparity?

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Timberwolves at Knicks: What to Watch For

Carmelo Anthony is licking his chops at the Wolves' defense

Carmelo Anthony is licking his chops at the Wolves’ defense

Your 2-0 Minnesota Timberwolves are in New York and take on the 1-1 Knicks Sunday night at Madison Square Garden at 7:30 Eastern.

Coming off a blowout victory Friday night against Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Wolves face another test tonight in Carmelo Anthony & co.

Here’s what to watch for tonight against the Knicks:

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Unfamiliar Territory: A (Wolves) Blowout Win (WOLVES 100, Thunder 81)

Chicago Bulls Michael Jordan shrugs after sinking a basket to set a new points record for scoring in one half of an NBA finals game during first half play against Portland in Chicago

The Wolves blew out the Thunder last night. Corey Brewer couldn’t even explain it.

I’m well familiar with this struggle. Blogging about the Timberwolves has often meant trying to think up interesting observations of a blowout game. It was a 15-point game after the first quarter, 20 at half, and 28 (!) after three. When the majority of the game was played with the outcome no longer in serious doubt, the details and nuances somehow seem less important. I’m familiar with this struggle.

What I am not familiar with is facing this struggle when the Timberwolves were the victors in the blowout. Even more unusual is that the lopsided win came against the Oklahoma City Thunder, the heavyweights of recent Northwest Divisions past. Sure, OKC was without Russell Westbrook. And while we’re discounting things, the Thunder’s return on the infamous James Harden trade no longer includes Kevin Martin (Hey, he plays for us now!) and is pretty much limited to Jeremy Lamb. Scott Brooks’ lineup is so thin that he’s doling out minutes to young Perry Jones (The Third!).

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INTEL REPORT: Thunder vs. Timberwolves

If you see this man in Minneapolis tonight, don't look directly at his shirt or you might go blind.

If you see this man in Minneapolis tonight, don’t look directly at his shirt or you might go blind.

The undefeated Minnesota Timberwolves, fresh off of a season-opening victory in overtime against the Orlando Magic, take on a more formidable opponent in the Oklahoma City Thunder tonight at Target Center.

You should watch it if you want to see how the team responds to the trouble it had putting away a lesser opponent, and to see how they stack up against one of the better teams in the Western Conference.

No, Russell Westbrook won’t be walking through that door–check that, maybe he’ll be walking through that door (I’m not sure if he’s traveling with the team, but if he is, just look for the athletic-looking guy limping around in borderline absurd technicolor hipster garb–you can’t miss him.)

A few quick dashes about tonight’s tilt before my lunch break ends:

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