Jordan Johnson/NBAE/Getty Images
Scouting Report: Timberwolves at Lakers
Timberwolves at Lakers | 9:30 PM, STAPLES CENTER
Where To Watch: FS North
Where to Listen 830 WCCO
My how things have changed since the 2003-2004 season.
Record-wise, these two teams sit at the bottom of the West. The Wolves stand at 3-10 overall, which is actually impressive considering the injuries the Wolves have had to overcome. The Lakers are at 3-12, currently in last place in the West – something Kobe Bryant probably isn’t happy about.
This is a homecoming of sorts for some Timberwolves players, including Zach LaVine and Shabazz Muhammad, who both attended UCLA.
This is a late one, so make sure to heat up the Thanksgiving leftovers and find a comfy spot on the couch.
The two teams played four times last season and the Wolves were able to win three times. The last came on March 28 at the Target Center and the Wolves won 143-107.
Nikola Pekovic led Minnesota with 26 points, shooting 9-of-10 from the field. Kevin Love (now with Cavliers) had a triple-double, finishing with 22 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. Kevin Martin scored 17 points, while Gorgui Dieng led the bench with 14. Corey Brewer and Chase Budinger scored 11 points each. Ricky Rubio added 10 points, six rebounds and six assists.
Kent Bazemore (now with Hawks) led LA with 21 points. Jodie Meeks (now with Pistons) added 19. Robert Sacre led the second unit with 14 points and seven rebounds. Wesley Johnson and Nick Young scored 13 and 11 points, respectively. Jordan Hill put up 10 points and seven boards.
THIS WEEK’S RESULTS
The Wolves are coming off of a 103-86 home loss against the Milwaukee Bucks last night. Brewer led Minnesota with 19 points, while Andrew Wiggins had his best all-around night as a pro, finishing with 14 points, eight rebounds, four assists, two blocks and a steal. Shabazz Muhammad led the second unit with 13 points, while Anthony Bennett and Zach LaVine scored 12 points each.
The Lakers are coming off of a 98-93 home loss to the Memphis Grizzlies last night. Bryant led all scorers with 22 points. Jeremy Lin and Nick Young scored 14 and 13 points, respectively. Ronnie Price and Jordan Hill each scored 11 points.
KEY MATCHUP: KOBE BRYANT VS. COREY BREWER
Bryant has been the offense for the Los Angeles Lakers this season, for better or worse.
This season, Bryant leads the league in scoring, putting up 26.4 points per game to go with 5.1 rebounds and 4.1 assists. He’s already played in nine more games than he did last season.
It will be interesting to see if Saunders puts Wiggins on Bryant or the veteran Brewer.
Brewer has played well of late after starting off slow this season. He’s averaging 11 points per game this season, but has scored more than 13 points in six of his last seven games. In four games against the Lakers last season, Brewer averaged 11 points per game.
Lakers: Steve Nash (back) and Julius Randle (tibia) are out for the season. Ryan Kelly (hamstring) and Xavier Henry (Achilles) are out indefinitely.
Wolves: Ricky Rubio (ankle), Nikola Pekovic (sprained wrist), Kevin Martin (fractured wrist) and Ronny Turiaf (sore right hip) are all out. Mo Williams (illness) is questionable.
Lakers: PG – Lin, SG – Bryant, SF – Johnson, PF – Boozer, C - Hill
Wolves: PG – Williams, SG - Brewer, SF - Wiggins, PF - Young, C - Dieng