Scouting Report | Wolves vs. Cavaliers
The Timberwolves are back at home after a four-game road trip.
Minnesota was in the midst of an 11-game losing streak before beating the Kings in double-overtime on Thursday night in Sacramento. At 11-19, the Timberwolves are just two games back from a playoff spot.
This is a winnable game for the Wolves, even if Karl-Anthony Towns misses his sixth-straight game with a left knee sprain.
The Cavaliers are 9-21 and play the Celtics on Friday night in Boston.
Minnesota’s defense will have to keep an eye on Cleveland’s young backcourt. Collin Sexton and Darius Garland, the team’s lottery picks over the last two seasons, are averaging a combined 29 points per game.
This is the first matchup between the two teams this season. The Wolves were 2-0 against the Cavaliers last season.
We can expect to get an update on Towns’ status after Saturday’s shootaround, assuming the Wolves do shootaround.
What: Wolves vs. Cavaliers
When: 7 p.m. CT, Dec. 28, 2019
Where: Target Center
Watch: Fox Sports North
Listen: 830 WCCO
Can you believe it’s been more than five years since the Wolves and Cavaliers made the Andrew Wiggins for Kevin Love swap?
For those of you who need to catch up: Wiggins was originally drafted by Cleveland with the first-overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. With LeBron James signing there, there was pressure on Cleveland to win ASAP. So, the Cavaliers traded for Love. Cleveland won a title and Love was a big piece of that.
In his sixth NBA season, Wiggins is putting up All-Star numbers, averaging 24.8 points, 5.4 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.1 blocks per game.
Love, who made three All-Star games with the Wolves, is averaging 16.2 points and 10.7 rebounds per game while shooting 44.2 percent from the field and 37.3 percent from the 3-point line. Love still holds the Timberwolves team record with 12.2 rebounds per game. Towns is close behind, averaging 11.8.
Cavaliers associate head coach JB Bickerstaff served as an assistant coach for the Wolves from 2008-2011.
Making A Statement
The Wolves will be rocking their Statement Uniforms in this one. Minnesota has worn the uniform just twice this season and has yet to win. Break the curse! We’ll see if the Wolves can do so in this one. They’ll wear the uniform three more times this season – Jan. 18 vs. Toronto, Jan. 25 vs. Oklahoma City and Feb. 8 vs. LA Clippers.
Wolves: Towns (knee) is questionable. Jake Layman (toe) is out.
Cavaliers: Dylan Windler (leg) and Larry Nance Jr. (knee) are questionable.
Wolves: PG—Napier, SG—Wiggins, SF—Graham, PF—Covington, C—Dieng
Cavaliers: PG—Sexton, SG – Garland, SF – Osman, PF – Love, C – Thompson