David Sherman / Getty Images

Wolves Can't Find Enough Offense In Loss to Jazz

by Katie Davidson
Digital Content Associate

Utah is the best defensive team in the league, and the Wolves were reminded of that on Wednesday night.

The 8-7 Wolves were held to 39.3% shooting from the field and 31.1% shooting from 3-point range in their 103-95 loss to the Jazz at Target Center. The Wolves also shot just 11-for-21 from the free-throw line (that’s more on the Wolves rather than being a product of the Jazz’s defense, but it should still be mentioned).

Minnesota is now 0-5 when scoring less than 110 points and 0-4 when shooting less than 40% from the field. I’m no expert, but I’d say those figures should be avoided in the future.

Andrew Wiggins led the Wolves in scoring with 22 points in his first game back after missing the Wolves’ last three games and showed us some Sports-Center-worthy drives to the hoop early on. Wiggins’ efficiency wasn’t there like it has been of late; it took him 24 field goal attempts to record 22 points, and he shot a rough 1-for-10 from 3-point range. But the exciting thing about Wiggins’ game this season is that he’s doing more than just scoring. When he isn’t shooting well, he’s going after loose balls and creating scoring opportunities for his teammates. While his shooting may need some polishing, Wiggins’ aggression didn’t decrease in his first game back, and that’s a great sign. Along with his 22 points, Wiggins also contributed seven rebounds and three assists.

Karl-Anthony Towns was the Wolves’ second-leading scorer after finishing with 14 points on 5-for-10 shooting from the field and 4-for-7 shooting from deep. It wasn’t one of KAT’s best games of the season; he and Wiggins both recorded two fouls before the halfway point of the first quarter and were benched for the remainder of the quarter. KAT was relatively quiet for the rest of the first half, but he drew Rudy Gobert out of the paint as he roamed around the perimeter, which opened up driving lanes for his teammates. That contribution shouldn’t be overlooked.

Kelan Martin had another solid game with 10 points on 4-of-8 shooting from the field. As Kyle Ratke and Julian Andrews mentioned in Wednesday’s episode of The Layup Line, it’s incredibly impressive how Gersson Rosas has acquired developing players who are progressing in the G League but ready to give the Wolves valuable minutes when called up.

Robert Covington and Josh Okogie continued with their stellar defensive play in Wednesday night’s game, but they weren’t quite able to produce the type of offensive contributions the Wolves needed to beat the Jazz for the second time this week. Ten of Covington’s 11 points came in the first half, and Okogie was held scoreless in all quarters aside from his four-point second quarter.

To make matters worse, Bojan Bogdanovic and Donovan Mitchell combined for 56 total points. Bogdanovic led all scorers with 30 points and recorded a game-high plus-minus of plus-38. Yet, the game featured 19 lead changes and four ties, including one at the 8:24 mark of the final frame. All hope isn’t lost, but the Wolves have to take advantage of their home games. They’re now 3-5 at Target Center, but they have a chance to improve their home record on Saturday, Nov. 23 when they host the 7-6 Phoenix Suns at 4 p.m. CT. The game will air on Fox Sports North and 830 WCCO. You can get tickets here.

NEXT UP:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter