It Looks Like Treveon Graham Is Going To Play A Big Role For Wolves In 2019-20
One pleasant surprise for Wolves fans this preseason has been the play of wing Treveon Graham.
For the Wolves, who look like they got an absolute steal when the acquired Graham and Shabazz Napier this offseason from the Nets, they knew the talent was there with Graham.
Graham has played in the Eastern Conference the last three seasons and played just 35 games last season with Brooklyn due to a variety of injuries.
In 2017-18, though, Graham looked like one of the better young up-and-coming two-way players in the league. He was a versatile defender and connected on 41.2 percent of his 3-pointers.
He took a step back last season, and a lot of that had to do with injury. It does say something, though, that he started 21 games out of 35 for a team that ended up making the playoffs.
The skillset that we saw in 2017-18 is still there.
Graham has been big part of the team’s preseason play, starting two out of three games (although, head coach Ryan Saunders said not to look too much into who the team’s fifth starter is alongside Jeff Teague, Andrew Wiggins, Robert Covington and Karl-Anthony Towns).
This started with a strong training camp in Mankato.
“He blends in nicely with the group and he’s not afraid to do the little things,” Wolves coach Ryan Saunders said after Monday's practice.
Saunders will approach the fifth starter spot with flexibility, calling it “fluid.” The nice thing with Graham, though, is that he can start or come off the bench. He feels comfortable doing both, even if that means going back and forth.
“It really doesn’t make a difference to me,” Graham said. “Before the game, just let me know what my role is for the day and I’m fine whether I’m in the starting lineup or whether I’m coming off the bench or wherever my role is for that game. I’m fine with just doing whatever it takes to help the team win.”
An added bonus for Graham during his transition to a new team is having Pablo Prigioni on the coaching staff. Prigioni was an assistant with Brooklyn last season and held Graham accountable.
Through three preseason games, Graham has played 15.7 minutes per game and has been efficient in that time, averaging 10 points and 3.7 rebounds while shooting 54.5 percent from the field and 50 percent from the 3-point line.
He’s not going to lead the Wolves in scoring very often, but he is a guy who defends at a high level and plays with confidence.
“Playing my game and being aggressive,” Graham said on his strengths. “Being aggressive is one of my biggest strengths and helps me out a late.”
In what has been an extremely competitive training camp and preseason, we aren’t sure whether or not Graham will start 10, 20 or 80 games. But it’s looking more and more like he’s going be a part of whatever the team does in 2019-20.