Scouting Report: Wolves (4-2) at Lakers (3-4) | Nov. 10, 2013

Scouting Report: Wolves (4-2) at Lakers (3-4) | Nov. 10, 2013


Timberwolves at Lakers | 8:30 PM — Staples Center

Where to Watch: Fox Sports North

Where to Listen: 830 WCCO-AM

This isn't your father's Lakers.

In fact, they might not even be your Lakers. The 2013-14 Lakers squad looks much different than fans are used to, mostly due to the injury to Kobe Bryant. It looks like for the first time in a while, the Lakers are in a real threat to not be a Top-8 team in the West by season's end.

The Wolves are hoping to beat the Lakers for the first time in 23 games, and they will attempt to do just that tonight at Staples Center. Tipoff is set for 8:30 p.m. CT on Fox Sports North and 830 WCCO-AM. With no Kobe, this seems like the perfect time to do it.

Last Meeting

The two teams last played on March 27 last season and the Lakers won 120-117 at the Target Center.

Bryant led the way with 31 points and seven assists. Big man Dwight Howard (now with Rockets) finished with 25 points, 16 boards and five blocked shots. Antawn Jamison (now with Clippers) finished with 18 points off the bench. Paul Gasol finished with 17 points, while Steve Nash pitched in 16.

The Wolves were without Kevin Love, but managed to have eight players hit double-digits in scoring. Nikola Pekovic had a solid day, finishing with 19 points and 16 rebounds. Dante Cunningham added 18 off the bench. Chase Budinger scored 14 points and hauled in nine rebounds. Ricky Rubio finished with 13.

Fans may remember this game because of the controversial ending. Many thought that Bryant fouled Rubio on the final play of the game. Had the foul been called, Rubio would have had the chance to shoot three free throws to send the game into overtime.

The Lakers were 4-0 against the Wolves last season.

This Week’s Results

Minnesota is coming off of a 116-108 win over the Dallas Mavericks.

Love continued his hot play and almost had a triple-double, scoring 32 points, grabbing 15 rebounds and dishing out eight assists. The other Kevin, Kevin Martin, also scored 32 points and was 3-of-5 from the 3-point line. Corey Brewer finished with 17 points while Pekovic added 15.

The Wolves made 26 free throws compared to just 10 for Dallas.

Los Angeles fell 96-85 to the New Orleans Pelicans.

Former Dallas center Chris Kaman led LA in scoring with 16 points. Nick Young and Steve Blake both finished with 13 .Jodie Meeks added 11.

Former Wolves forward Wes Johnson finished with three points off the bench while shooting 1-of-5 from the field. Johnson is averaging 8.7 points and 4.4 rebounds per game.

What To Watch: Ricky Rubio vs. Steve Nash

Many compare Rubio's passing skills and vision on the court to Nash. That's something Rubio has to be proud of, being Nash was a two-time MVP and is a future Hall of Famer.

While Nash's glory days are behind him, he is still a leader for this Los Angeles team. Nash is averaging 7.6 points and 5.2 assists per game this season. Nash has been held out of the second night of back-to-back games this season, meaning he didn't play in New Orleans on Friday night after Thursday's win in Houston.

Rubio has struggled a bit so far this season. Rubio is averaging 9.3 points, 8.4 assists and 3.6 steals per game, but is shooting just 28 percent from the field. In three games against LA, Rubio averaged 11.6 points and eight assists per game.

Injury Report

 The Wolves will be without wing Chase Budinger, who is out while recovering from preseason left knee surgery. Ronny Turiaf is out with a radial head fracture and will be re-evaluated next week. The Lakers will be without Kobe Bryant, who is recovering from an Achilles injury.

Probable Starters

  Timberwolves Lakers
PG Ricky Rubio Steve Nash
SG Kevin Martin Jodie Meeks
SF Corey Brewer Nick Young
PF Kevin Love Pau Gasol
C Nikola Pekovic Chris Kaman


For more news and notes on the team follow the Minnesota Timberwolves and Mark Remme on Twitter.