Posts Tagged ‘andrew wiggins’

Things started off so well.  After a 20-3 lead in the first quarter against the Grizzlies, I all but anointed us the new superpower in the West.  We were going to topple the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference Finals and then sweep the Cavs in a series that without doubt would make LeBron James start checking out homes in Plymouth next to Cole Aldrich’s duplex.  Karl-Anthony Towns was on his way to a 51 point night, Andrew Wiggins would become meaner than KG at Carmelo and La La Anthony’s anniversary party and Kris Dunn and Ricky Rubio would sign a blood pact to work together forever and have 100 assists per game until 2030.

Then we got Wolvesy.

Towns stopped scoring, Wiggins missed free throws that a real mean person would have made and Ricky’s shot almost missed the backboard, which is actually a slight improvement for him.  Did I miss the memo about the Grizzlies hitting threes all of a sudden?  The Grizzlies don’t shoot threes!  That’s like Bowser suddenly being the fastest accelerator in Mario Kart.  These are not the rules we agreed upon!  Bowser’s fat ass takes forever to get going, nobody gets to be Odd Job in Goldeneye and the Memphis Grizzlies are plodding, bulbous sea-cows who don’t hit anything out of bean bag toss range.

We got cocky.  And that’s Minnesota Karma Punishment 101.  We don’t get arrogant in Minnesota.  We bundle up, plug in our Vitamin D lights so we don’t get seasonal depression and imagine that everything horrible that could happen will, because it usually does.  I once wore shorts on an unseasonably warm day in April and then it stayed cold until the first week of June and it’s ALL MY FAULT.

So now we have our attitude readjusted to proper Upper Midwest standards.  We are going to be good, but damnit we haven’t earned the swagger yet and we paid for it against the Grizzlies.  Remember Kevin Love?  He was a miserable bastard who hated every second of his life here and we won 40 games his last season!  That’s like being undefeated by Timberwolves standards.  I recommend that all Wolves players not properly familiar with the Minnesota mindset recite this to themselves every night before bed:  “We don’t deserve to win.  We are the Brooklyn Nets with less hope.  We are the Philadelphia Sixers if they were dumb enough to think they were a real basketball team.  The Washington Generals have a better chance of beating the Globetrotters than we do of making two shots in a row.  We should really just stick to what we’re good at, which is convincing ourselves that living in a tundra is normal and not talking to people unless we’ve known them for 15 years.”

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Nemanja Bjelica demonstrating the proper way to act in Minnesota.  Also, did you know that Bjelica has a first name?  It’s pronounced “Noot-Bot”.

That ought to appease the karma gods.  81-1 here we come!

Saturday night we play the Kings in Sacramento.  We’ll probably lose to them because they are the most dysfunctional team in the NBA and we are horrible people who deserve everything that’s coming to us.

Go Wolves!

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Timberpups Howl!

The Minnesota Timberwolves are going to be good this year.  Of course I say that every season, but this time I mean it.  Yeah, we haven’t had a winning season for the entirety of this blog’s existence and the first post was literally about how we were finally going to be good that year.  But no joke we are probably going to possibly maybe not suck this year.  Did I jinx it?  Crap, I think I just jinxed it.

This isn’t like the time I thought Anthony Bennett was going to learn how to play basketball, or the time I pretended like Nikola Pekovic wasn’t Greg Oden with none of the talent and more of the drinking problem.  This is legit.  We are just like the 2009 Oklahoma City Thunder.  A very young team bursting with talent, who gradually grew from phenoms to a perennial title contender, only to be inevitably decimated and broken up by egos and Big Market aspirations.  Shit.

Here’s why I think we’re actually going to be awesome this year:  Damnit, it’s our turn.  I know that life isn’t about fairness but our season has ended in April for so many years that I’m not even sure that NBA players know Minnesota has warm weather anymore.  I don’t think the NBA is rigged, but they should 100% rig this season to give us at least a 45 win season.  45 wins!  I don’t think that’s greedy.   Just enough to give us an 8th seed in the Western Conference.  Then everybody will get to see Minneapolis in the springtime.  We’ll show everybody Dinkytown and the 30,000 apartment buildings that Bob Dylan might have slept in according to all the landlords.  We’ll take people pontooning and warn them about the dangers of speading Zebra Mussels.  Hell, we can even let people see St. Paul if they’re into trees or sleeping or something.  You know, the Minnesota experience.

This is our year.

Knock on wood.

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Photo from hofmag.com

First game of the season is against The Grizzlies in Memphis on October 26.  Remember when they were the Vancouver Grizzlies before cell phones existed?  We were good then!

GO WOLVES!

 

OMG OMG OMG!  Tom Thibodeau is our coach!

I realize this is a few days late, but I live in Minneapolis.  Prince died and everything officially shut down while a giant chunk of downtown became a three-day dance party.  We lost our purple president.  It’s like if 69 Kevin Garnetts died.

However, I’ve had a moment to regroup and it’s time to re-commence my excitement:

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Come on ride the Thibs Train! Yeehaw! (Photo: Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Yes, there are concerns about his overplaying players, driving them into the ground and therefore causing unneeded injuries.  That may or may not be true, but it’s a small concern.  If you’ve been driving a Ford Focus for 15 years, you don’t complain because your new Ferrari doesn’t have a cup-holder.

Many people are wondering how our young team is going to fit in with this hard-nosed workhorse.  Will they fall apart under the pressure or flourish with the new discipline? Here’s how I predict it will go with each player individually:

Karl-Anthony Towns – KAT is going to be a 25ppg/12 rpg player next year.  Thibs’ intensity will only make him work harder and he’ll become a top ten player on his way to eventually becoming the greatest big man in NBA history.  Basketball will be renamed “KATball” and every player will be required to have an imaginary friend.  He’ll be elected ruler of the new world when we colonize Mars and will rule over 1000 years of peace.  I’m freaking out!  I LOVE KAT!!!

Andrew Wiggins – This will go either one of two ways.  Either his nice-guy Canadian DNA will cause him to wither in the face of a screamy, meany-face coach or it’ll unlock his inner mutant like Deadpool. I’m hoping for the latter. In fact, Wiggins won’t fully arrive until he becomes so enraged that he rips Thibs’ throat out like a vampire and sets the Cannuck flag on fire, screaming “I denounce everything Canadian and hereby proclaim my home as HELL!”

Ricky Rubio – It’s really hard to imagine our little Care Bear Ricky with tough-guy Thibs.  It’s also hard to imagine his knees holding up under the work.  The good news is, Ricky could never jump before, so he can blow his knees out 250 times and still have the same speed/vertical.  I think Thibs is going to execute 45 shooting coaches to make this work.

Zach LaVine – LaVine is the only one out of this group that I think will be unfazed by all the ferocity.  LaVine is just too chill and oblivious.  I’m pretty sure Thibs could strangle LaVine’s hamster in front of him and he’d still be wondering if he set his DVR to record “Empire”.

Kevin Garnett – Thibs is Garnett.  Garnett is Thibs.  They are a match made in heaven.  If these two men were mob bosses and I got caught ratting on them, I’d hang myself so I wouldn’t have to get skinned alive, rolled in honey, thrown to a genetically modified killer bear, then beaten to death with a folding chair on fire.

Shabazz Muhammad – Guess who’s not going to be sneaking girls into hotel rooms when he’s not supposed to anymore?

Gorgui Dieng – Dieng runs like a choo-choo train. Look at him next time he plays.  He doesn’t move up or down when he runs and his arms hang low like they’re on the tracks.  This has nothing to do with Tom Thibodeau but I’ve been wanting to say that for a while.

Nikola Pekovic – Upon hearing about Thibs’ hiring, Pek’s legs immediately turned to dust.  Pek is currently a $20 million cloud floating over Yellowstone National Park.

Nemanja Bjelica – One soft European + one insanely psychotic, heart-attack-waiting-to-happen coach = What could go wrong?

Adreian Payne – Adreian has a lot of talent.  Maybe Thibs can unlock that and scare away some of those stupid extra vowels in the process?

Tyus Jones – Probably the only player who, if Thibs makes him sad, can run back to their mother in Burnsville.  Nothing a Karmelkorn Treat Center stop at the Burnsville Mall can’t fix.

Tayshaun Prince – Thibs and Tayshaun will spend most of the year reminiscing about graduating high school together.

Damjan Rudez – Rudez also looks forward to being introduced to the team.

Greg Smith – 10 day contract guys are like handjobs.  Are they really worth counting?

Next up for us is a lottery pick and free-agency.  Let’s sign all of them!

Go Wolves!

I haven’t written a Timberwolves blog in a long time.  How could I, when Sam Mitchell has beaten, slapped, squeezed, tea-bagged and Timberwolved all the joy out of everything that made the team fun?  My heart is broken, like Zach LaVine finding out Space Jam isn’t real.

I got depressed.  I didn’t want to write 20 blogs in a row about my burning hatred of Mitchell and how I JUST KNOW they’re going to hire that human centipede full time this summer.  How we’ll sign Karl-Anthony Towns’ alter-ego “Karlito” and then pick up “Lil’ Penny” to make him feel more at home.  Then we’ll trade for some geezer named “Jellybean” who was old enough to play in Morris Day & The Time and start him over one of our future All-Stars because “I’m Sam Mitchell and I know everything, except how stupid having one earring looks on a grown man in 2016.  And basketball.”

Being a Timberwolves fan is like going to a mall with tons of cool stores that all promise to be open next year.  What are we supposed to do in the meantime?  Enjoy this kiosk?  I don’t want a Superman belt-buckle or hermit crabs, I want goddamn Lego Land open!  This mall has been under construction for 14 years!  Our losing record can almost legally drive to this hypothetical mall!

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Timberwolves fans from 2004-present

A break was needed.  But now I’m back.  I’m back for all the highs and lows and lows and lows.  I’m back for Bill Simmons actually saying the first nice thing he’s ever said about the Timberwolves.  I’m back for our future draft pick and rising stars, even though it’s less clear who’s steering this ship than who’s running the Illuminati.  I’m back for the soon-to-be-refurbished stadium, because when this beast was built Heavy D & The Boys were still cutting edge.

Just please…whoever’s calling the shots out there in Timberwolf Land – don’t hire Sam Mitchell.  I’ll take anybody else.  I’ll take Kurt Rambis, the panda from above, the weird hitch-hiking robot from Canada that New Jersey destroyed.  I’ll take this other Sam Mitchell, who I accidentally found in a Google search and seems to be some kind of rugby/cricket/white-person-ball player from Tasmania who dresses like a sporty bumblebee:

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I bet he’d play Towns

Next up we play the Clippers in Minneapolis.  Blake Griffin is almost back from his suspension for punching a staff member.  Suddenly I want him on our team.

Go Wolves!

 

Goddamn these Timberwolves up and downs.  If we were Philadelphia I could just go dead inside and pretend like I don’t base 95% of my happiness on how well a bunch of strangers in mesh polyester put a ball into a hoop.

But I can’t.  Because I’m excited.  And it feels weird to be excited.  I think I just talked myself out of being excited.  No, I’m excited again!

There is a perpetual doom and gloom about being a Timberwolves fan, where we just assume that the team will be broken up, or moved to Seattle or Wiggins will inevitably lose an eye in a tragic Jucy Lucy squirting catastrophe.  I refuse to succumb to it.

Karl-Anthony Towns is my favorite Timberwolves rookie since Kevin Garnett.  The great thing is, I said that about Andrew Wiggins last year.  Ricky Rubio continues to be the best NBA player that the rest of the league never notices or respects.  KG is the best mentor a team can ask for.  Gorgui Dieng is playing awful this year but he moves around like a confused lava lamp and that’s soothing in a way.  All positives!

No team is immune from breakup, but our core of Rubio/Towns/Wiggins are all top-notch dudes that want to win HERE.  Plus, nobody leaves on KG’s watch.  KG is the mafia boss of the NBA.  You can try and leave, but you better get a fake identity and join the Hungarian badminton team to be safe, otherwise you’re waking up with a horse head and Stephon Marbury’s bloody jersey in your bed.

I’ve been paranoid for half a decade about this team being moved.  Turns out they’re on contract for renovations through 2032 so it’s technically impossible.  The relief!  This is like thinking you have smallpox and finding out you just have small palms.  Sorry, Supersonics fans.  Guess you’ll just have to hope Portland grows big enough to touch Seattle.  Hope you like hipsters!

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“We win games, but only ironically.” Photo from i.telegraph.co.uk/

There’s no way this team won’t end up being great someday.  Even we can’t screw this up, right?  It’s not like we’re a team that traded away two superstars, had a point guard focus more on a hip-hop album that made the Chicago Bears look like good rappers, drafted a player who’s not even in the league anymore over arguably the best player in the NBA and tried to coax women to games by offering a cup of wine and a free DVD of “Girls”.

Oh shit, we’re screwed.  We are the Insane Clown Posse of the NBA and nobody but meth-heads will ever love us.

No, no.  We’re the future NBA Champs and they’ll close the league after us because nobody will ever be able to top it!

Go Wolves!

Alzheimer patient Sam Mitchell tries to remember who's on his team. Photo from nba.cdn.turner.com/

Alzheimer patient Sam Mitchell tries to remember who’s on his team. Photo from nba.cdn.turner.com/

The difference between two games can be startling.  One minute you’re hopelessly falling into Kurt Rambis 2.0 Land and the next you’re beating a Eastern Conference contender on the road and dreaming of 80-2.  Damnit Wolves, you’re never boring.

After Thursday’s game, I was in a depression spiral about our team.  I could never be an NBA coach.  I couldn’t even coach third graders shooting at a Nerf hoop.  But I think I could be a better coach than Sam Mitchell.

How in the hell do you play Karl-Anthony Towns for only 22 minutes?  And Ricky Rubio for 24?  It’s like we’re driving this fancy SUV to dinner and 1/4 of the way there we go “Fuck it, let’s take the unicycle.  No, no, let the drunk guy steer.”

It must be hard being an NBA coach, having idiots like me telling you how to do your occupation.  It’s a high-pressure, high-blame job and he got thrust into it out of necessity because of Flip’s passing.  BUT WHAT THE HELL, SAM?!   You don’t start someone if they’re old enough to have starred in Space Jam, okay?  I’ll give you a pass on KG because he’s the heart and soul of the team but the only thing Tayshaun Prince should be starting is his AARP subscription.

I wasn’t expecting a championship this year, or even making the playoffs.  But I expected to watch entertaining basketball where we got to see our young studs earn their chops in the fire.  Instead, we got mind-boggling rotations that seem to be picked by a drunk parakeet pecking at pictures taped to a wall.

I began to feel that familiar feeling of “we’re totally fucked and we’re going to have to sit through another long season of Kevin Martin holding onto the ball longer than it takes to charge a cellphone and Zach LaVine exhibiting the control of a methed-out Roller Girl.”

Then Saturday happened AND WE ARE THE GREATEST!

Karl-Anthony Towns is the next Tim Duncan/Karl Malone/Shaq/Jordan/Jesus!  Wiggins is literally made of superpowered maple leaves from Hell!  Zach LaVine is exactly the same!

And get this:  Ol’ Black Hole Chicken Wing Shot Kevin Martin misses a game and suddenly everybody gets the ball.  Unfortunately, he was out because of personal reasons involving his family.  That’s sad and I don’t like that, but I do think we can find a way to make him miss more games without personal tragedy or getting hurt.  I understand Martin is very polite.  I suggest we start inviting him to every birthday party, going away party and bris we can think of.  Tell him Pooh Richardson invited him to Burning Man, Crunch is getting married, Milt Newton is building a Kevin Martin shrine in Madagascar and he has to cut the ribbon.  I think if we do this right we can make him miss at least 75 out of the next 77 games.

Next up we play the 7-1 Hawks in Atlanta.  We’re 3-0 on the road but this is going to be a rough one.  Hopefully Dominique Wilkins will punch a guy again for non-payment on a suit and it’ll throw them off.

Go Wolves!

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The NBA season isn’t over yet, but it sure as shit is for the Timberwolves.  Stick a rusty, injured, confused, teenage, non-defense playing fork in it!  But hey, what better time to roll out the end of the season Timberwolves Awards than right when the rest of the basketball world is gearing up to start playing for realsies?

Here are my awards for each Timberwolves player currently on the roster.  Someday I’ll get to do this when there’s actual leaves on the trees:

MVP: Ricky Rubio – We simply need this wobbly noodle of a man-boy.  Only Minnesota and Spain seem to realize how good he is.  Maybe if we got on national television more often than chimpanzees go to space, the rest of the world would catch on?  Rubio to Wiggins forever!

Brightest Future Award: Andrew Wiggins – Speaking of forever, I want to use this space to say FUCK YOU to Toronto and everybody associated with it that thinks they’re going to steal him from us.  Oh you guys think you’re so cool because you got Drake?  Well, we got Bob Dylan, Prince and sometimes Josh Harnett so go suck on that you mountie-butted syrup-lickers!  Do you really think we’re going to let Wiggins go after the whole Kevin Love debacle?  NEVER!  Rob Ford has a better chance of being elected President or Premier or His Holiness or whatever the fuck you guys call your leaders there but nobody knows because nobody cares about Canada.

Most Likely To Become A Bag Of Pencil Shavings Next Year Award: Kevin Garnett – Dear god, he’s old.  He’s older than me and I don’t even play pick-up basketball anymore for fear of needing a hip replacement.  I love KG.  I love him like my dog loves pooping on a very specific piece of paneling on our floor.  It’s direct and special.  But I believe we are going to sign him to a two-year contract and that is going to be interesting.  One-Eyed Willy has got more in the tank than KG.  Let’s just hope he buys this damn team.

Most Likely To Shoot No Matter What Award: Kevin Martin – Well, I guess somebody’s got to score.  It’d be nice if Wiggins could get more of those shots, but you just can’t seem to stop K-Mart from lobbing up his weird sideways rubber-band sling-shot.  I know it usually goes in, but it’s like he shoots it from his belly button somehow.  It gives me a seizure.

Somehow Managed To Play Less Games Than Kevin Garnett Award: Nikola Pekovic – People always say that Pekovic looks like Non The Destroyer from Superman 2, but at least Non was in the whole movie.  Lose some weight, you giant walrus.  At least the 500lb women of Walmart know when to get on a Rascal.

The “Their Mom Was Definitely Drunk When They Spelled His Name On The Birth Certificate” Award: Adreian Payne – Really?  Adreian?  What’re you saving up all those vowels for?  Was your mom Vanna White?  That’s not fair, though.  My favorite basketball players ever were Miechaeol Jordan, Kaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarl Malone and AEIOU Johnson.

He Sucks Now But He’ll Definitely Be Better Next Year Award: Gorgui Dieng – This is Gorgui’s second time winning this award.  He’s slated to win it every year until he retires.

Best Dunker/Worst Player Award:  Zach LaVine – Hey, it worked for Harold Miner, right?

The “He’s Definitely Gone Next Year” Award: Gary Neal – Gary wants to live in Minnesota about as bad as Kim Kardashian.

Most Fun Name To Say Award: Shabazz Muhammad – Gorgui is fun to say, but Shabazz Muhammad is like taking your mouth on a motorcycle over a field of bubble-wrap.  SHABAZZ!  It makes me feel like Batman throwing smoke-pellet onto the ground.  SHABAZZ!!!!

The “Hey, Go Ahead And Take THIS One, Canada” Award: Anthony Bennett – Fuck you, Toronto.

Whitest Dude Alive Award MVP: Chase Budinger

Whitest Dude Alive Award Runner-up: Robbie Hummel

Whitest Dude Alive Newcomer Award: Justin Hamilton

The “I Totally Forgot That Lorenzo Brown Is On Our Team” Award: Lorenzo Brown 

Next up we play the Brooklyn Nets here in Minnesota.  I’m disappointed that it’s not in Brooklyn.  I was really looking forward to seeing their two year highlight video of KG’s 6 ppg for them.  Go Wolves!