Simons Says - April 25, 2013
It’s been more than a week and it’s eerily quiet at Timberwolves HQ. That’s what happens when the party continues but it’s left your house. An 82-game marathon that was supposed to open door No. 3 to the playoffs didn’t materialize.
It left me wondering. How the heck did I do with my early season predictions? So often, you’ll see so-called insiders rolling out their brackets and picks and when it’s over, they are nowhere to be found. So, let me take my lumps now and you are the judge.
First of all, I know I swung and missed on both the LA Lakers and our Wolves. No doubt about it. How could you predict all the injuries and trouble the Wolves encountered this past season. You simply can’t. I thought the Lakers would be much better than they played. O-2.
That said, let’s look. From Oct. 18, my picks.
In the West. What a blockbuster by OKC to trade James Harden as the season starts to the Rockets. Harden responds by showing up to his first game, signing an $80M extension and busting for 37 points on 14-of-25 shooting, 12 assists in 44 minutes and in a win over the Pistons.
I had been preaching the Lakers in the West but I’m fudging on that now. I just can’t give it to OKC for Seattle reasons (yes, still bitter about the NBA allowing the SuperSonics franchise relocation to Oklahoma) so I’ll reluctantly stick with LAL to win the West, OKC, San Antonio, Denver, and in the pack will be LAC, the Timberwolves, Memphis and Dallas. Yes, the playoffs will be back and basketball for a reason in mid-April will warm the hearts of hoopaholics everywhere in the upper Midwest
Well. I whiffed on the Clippers being as dynamic and tough as they’d become. That is a nice team. Dallas missed the dance and instead the Golden State Warriors are back in for the first time in years. Golden State won’t advance and neither will the Lakers. OKC will earn its second straight trip to the NBA Finals.
Now, in the East. After watching Miami handle the nicely retooled Celtics, the Heat have to get the nod. They are better than last year and if D-Wade plays bigger than last year, they’ll get to the Finals to defend their crown. I still like the Celtics. Not sold on Indiana, Brooklyn or the patchwork Knicks. I defy the experts and see Chicago as a challenge even if D-Rose is missing. Look out for the 76ers especially if they are healthy.
I whiffed on the Sixers and did you see how fast Doug Collins got off the court?! Brooklyn, Indiana and the Knicks truly used the season to improve and now, on any given night, they can beat the Heat. I still see Miami defending its crown but this time, with trouble. The East has some firepower and as the Finals draw closer, you’ll see some amazing games.
Digging into the SimonsSays e-mail box. Darnell from Bloomington: “Rod, nice to say hello and visit with you at Target Field the other day. One more question for you. Do most of the players live here in the Twin Cities during the off-season? Thanks again and keep up the good work on GameON!”
Darnell, it was nice to meet you too and thanks for taking time to say hello at the ballpark (great day, a bit cold but the Twins beat the Marlins in the first of the two games).
Most of the players do not live here. They are truly scattered all over the globe! Andrei Kirilenko, Alexey Shevd, Ricky Rubio and Nikola Pekovic will all journey to their homes and family in Europe and Russia for a spell and many of the American players have places here and in the true hometowns. Kevin Love, for example, spends a great deal of his time in Southern California. Coach Adelman in the Pacific Northwest and so forth.
During the off-season, they are accessible to their jobs here by plane and when needed. Thanks for your question and for keeping up with us on GameON!
More to come so until the next time, enjoy the warmth of the sun that’s returning after all that snow and by all means, keep your GameON!
Lynx in camp and ready to play
It’s nearly here as the 2012 Western Conference Champion Minnesota Lynx kick off their 15th anniversary season in the WNBA at home against Connecticut on Saturday, June 1 at 7 p.m. The 2013 WNBA campaign includes 34 regular-season games, dating from May 24 and Sept. 14. This year’s All-Star Game will be held in Uncasville, Connecticut on Saturday, July 27. The Lynx will play Western Conference teams Los Angeles (three times on the road, twice at home) and Phoenix (three times at home, twice on the road) five times this season, while facing off with San Antonio, Seattle and Tulsa four times each, twice at home and twice on the road. Minnesota will face all six Eastern Conference teams twice, once at home and once on the road. The 2013 Lynx campaign also includes two nationally broadcast home games on July 9 vs. Atlanta and Aug. 24 vs. Indiana.
We’re all on MY29!
The Wolves played a franchise-record 78 regular-season games televised locally, 25 of which were on MY29, WFTC-TV and 50 on Fox Sports North. WFTC My29 is also where you find GameON! each and every Sunday at 10 a.m.!
Breaking News!! See you on TV AT A NEW TIME
Catch your Wolves on this Sunday’s GameON! this week!! You don’t want to miss the Emmy nominated GameON! at 10 a.m. this Sunday morning on FOX’s My29 and throughout the weekend on MidCo Sports Net. This week GameON! is talking Wolves with Timberwolves.com writer and basketball insider Mark Remme with the Top 5 Wolves Moments from the season past, Twins CF Aaron Hicks, we’re 1-on-1 with former Twins All Star and KTWIN personality Ron Coomer, the new Hamline basketball coach Jay Hayes joins us and Minnetonka native Jane Hirt reports from Hollywood on the new movie -42-.
GameON! is broadcast in High Definition and can be found on ITunes, on our new GameON! App (free and available for Apple/Android) and online at www.gameontvmn.com. GameON! allows you the opportunity to get up close and personal, to meet your favorite players and fellow fans at our weekly tapings at Kieran’s Irish Pub and its sister locations. GameON! offers in-depth interviews with the top players, great food, sports newsmakers and we get you inside your favorite teams (including the Wolves). You can friend us on Facebook at GameOnTvMN. Drop me a note, Rod@KTWIN.com GameON! is also seen in North & South Dakota and Western Minnesota on MidCo SportsNet several times a weekend. We reserve the right to use your e-mails here in SimonsSays at Timberwolves.com.
And last but not least, please catch Rod after each and every Twins game as he hosts the new Post game show “KTWIN Final Call”. Rod’s joined by longtime Minnesota music aficionado Jason Nagel on 96.3 KTWIN-FM radio during this baseball season.
Keep your GameON! See you soon!