Quick Hits | Minnesota at Portland Reaction
After last night’s 108-97 road loss to the Portland Trail Blazers, our Kyle Ratke made a few observations. He typed them here. Enjoy.
After games during the week, we like to give you folks a few “Quick Hits” here on Timberwolves.com.
It’s Monday, which is a weekday. The Wolves played the Blazers last night. What does that mean? YES! QUICK HITS!
Unfortunately, the Wolves fell last night to the Blazers after holding an 18-point lead in the first half. Not to make excuses (but I am because that’s what I do)… It was a road game and it was on the second night of a back-to-back. With that being said, the Wolves are 6.5 games back from the eighth seed in the Western Conference. There are only 26 games remaining… (Insert High School Coach Voice)… PLAY EVERY GAME LIKE IT’S YOUR LAST, BECAUSE IT COULD BE!
Side-note: I never played high school basketball, but I imagine it would sound something like that. In unrelated news, I airballed four shots in my alumni tournament earlier this month. Go team!
Here are a few observations from last night’s 108-97 loss to the Blazers:
1.) Thomas Robinson… Back to His Kansas Days?
Forward Thomas Robinson showed a glimpse of why he was the No. 5 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft. His first two and a half seasons in the league? Somewhat disappointing. He failed to find a consitent role on the Kings or Rockets, and while he’s averaging less than five points per game this season with the Blazers, he came to play last night.
Robinson put up 14 points (second highest total this season) and hauled in a career-high 18 rebounds. It was his first double-double as a member of the Blazers and his fourth double-double as a pro.
Once All-Star LaMarcus Aldridge comes back, Robinson will see fewer minutes, but at least he’ll always have this (I’m sorry, Corey… Godspeed):
— RockChalk FollowBack (@RockChalkFB) February 24, 2014
Brewer will always have that famous dunk over Derek Fisher (who will never go away), so it’s not like he lost his dunking powers. It’s just that Robinson beat him on this particular attempt. For a Blazers fan, it was a thing of beauty. For a Wolves fan, you put your head in the pillow and sobbed so nobody in the room could hear you. Sometimes sports aren’t fun.
Coach Rick Adelman inserted Shabazz Muhammad, Gorgui Dieng and Robbie Hummel at the same time last night! A bunch of this has to do with the fact that the Wolves are shorthanded. Fans have been asking for the young bucks to get some playing time all season long and for better or worse, they got it last night.
These players are going to go through growing pains and obviously growing pains hurt less after wins, but seeing some sort of development is nice.
Mark Remme and I were in Mankato for Training Camp during the fall and the one things that was very apparent was the fact that Shabazz Muhammad was hitting the offensive boards like a mad man.
He did the same last night, hauling in five on the offensive end, for a career-high seven total rebounds in just over 22 minutes of play. Not bad for a rookie small forward.
In unrelated news, Dieng, Muhammad and Hummel were a combined 2-of-12. That’s not very good.
3.) Kevin Love… Yeah, He’s Decent At Basketball
Love was pure gold again last night, even though he threw up a few questionable shots in the third quarter when Minnesota’s offense looked like it forgot what basketball was for roughly six minutes.
In three games this week, Love’s averaged 36.7 points!!!, 12.7 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game, while shooting 57.1 percent from the field, 46.4 percent from the 3-point line and 86.2 percent from the free-throw line.
I mean, those are NBA 2K14 numbers.
Those look a lot like Player of the Week numbers to me…
The NBA will announce the Western Conference Player of the Week later today. Stay tuned.