Getty Images

Okogie Proves (Again) He's A Disruptor Defensively

by Kyle Ratke, Digital Content Manager

Digital Content Manager

Follow

If you stayed up late on Monday night, the Wolves rewarded you.

Minnesota beat Brooklyn 78-69 in Summer League play, closing out preliminary play with a 2-1 record.

And if you’ve been watching Wolves rookie Josh Okogie throughout Summer League, you’ve recognized that energy and effort aren’t an issue. Defensively, this guy has been everywhere.

Okogie finished Monday night with a modest 11 points, but paired that with five rebounds, four assists and three steals.

Plays like this should be watched on loop for Wolves fans. These aren’t common plays for NBA players, let alone 19-year-old NBA players.

“That’s what defense is all about, I mean multiple efforts and just communication,” Okogie said after the game. “If I see something, the best thing to do is yell it out because my voice can move faster than I will. It’s just an instinct I’ve always had.”

Fellow rookie Keita Bates-Diop, fresh off a double-double on Sunday, finished with 11 points, six rebounds and four steals. When Tom Thibodeau talked about wingspan and defense with these two players, he wasn’t lying. Bates-Diop also shot 2-for-5 from deep.

Jared Terrell, who the team signed to a two-way contract right before Summer League, finished with 13 points and five rebounds.

Closing things out was Josh Gray, who finished with 10 points and three steals off the bench.

For Summer League averages, Bates-Diop leads the team with 14.7 points, eight rebounds and two steals per game. Okogie is averaging 12.3 points to go with 5.3 rebounds, three assists and 2.3 steals. Amile Jefferson is at 10.7 points and 13 rebounds, a mark that ranks second in Summer League play.

Shawn Dawson and Yuta Watanebe led Brooklyn with 14 points each.

Now we’ll start up the Summer League tournament portion of the schedule. There are five games on Monday, so the team’s seed in the tournament is still up in the air and we aren’t sure if the Wolves first tournament game will be on Wednesday or Thursday.

What we do know, is that the Wolves will be seeded in the top half and almost all of that has to do with the team playing inspired defense.