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Shootaround Report | Wolves vs. Wizards

by Kyle Ratke, Digital Content Manager

Digital Content Manager


When the Wolves are at their best, it’s all about balance.

It’s about players like Karl-Anthony Towns, Jimmy Butler and Andrew Wiggins sometimes taking the backseat for the greater good of the team.

“ I think the sacrifices all three are making for the team, it’s important for us to win,” Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau said after Tuesday’s shootaround before the Wolves take on the Wizards. “The winning is the most important thing and you can’t lose sight of that.”

Towns leads the team with 20.9 points per game, Wiggins is at 18.9 and Butler is at 17.4. These are below last year’s averages, but the Wolves still find themselves 12-8, fifth in the West, a half game from fourth, a game back from third and 2.5 games back from second.

“We’re doing a great job right now . . . I mean, not just us three . . . Everyone has played big parts in wins we’ve garnered,” Towns said.

Tyus Steps Up

With Jeff Teague out the last two games with an Achilles injury, the Wolves have leaned on Tyus Jones, and he hasn’t disappointed. Jones is a combined +29 and is averaging 8.5 points, 6.5 assists, five rebounds, 5.5 steals and one block per game over the last two games. He’s shot a combined 6-for-12 from the field and 3-for-6 from the 3-point line.

“I think he’s stepped up and played well in the minutes he’s gotten,” Wizards coach Scott Brooks said. “He’s played well. I think it’s about identifying your strengths for your team.”

Jones’ role with the starting lineup changes a bit as he doesn’t need to be aggressive in the scoring department. Jones has scored efficiently, and whatever he’s doing in Teague’s absence is working.

“Obviously Jimmy, KAT, Wigs, they need the ball,” Jones said. “How I look at it is try to keep the ball moving and getting them all touches.”

Injury Updates

Nemanja Bjelica (ankle) and Teague (Achilles) have missed the last two games. It appears as if the two will officially be listed as questionable for tonight’s game against Washington.

For Bjelica, it’s a sprained ankle on the same foot he broke last season, but it doesn’t sound serious. He’ll workout before tonight’s game to see how he feels.

Teague feels “okay” and continues to get treatment.

We’ll update you accordingly.

Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. on Fox Sports North and 830 WCCO.