David Sherman/NBAE/Getty Images

Training Camp Report | Effort Won't Be An Issue For These Wolves

by Kyle Ratke, Digital Content Manager

Digital Content Manager


Day No. 2 of training camp is in the books for the Timberwolves at San Diego State University.

For players like Jimmy Butler, these practices are about showing effort and energy, which might not always be common for star-caliber players during the first of a two-a-day training camp practice at the end of September.

“Jimmy, his energy level is up there,” Wing Shabazz Muhammad said after Sunday’s practice. “That’s really good for us. Especially a superstar. Some superstars take plays off and stuff like that. I haven’t seen him take any plays off. That really rubs off on myself and everyone else.”

Not to steal anything from Drake, but Butler started from the bottom as a rookie struggling for minutes, and now he’s one of the league’s best two-way players. This didn’t happen by coincidence and it sounds like Butler wants the rest of his teammates to know that as long as the effort level is there, most other things will take care of themselves.

“As long as you compete and just play hard, sometimes you just get in the way on defense and the ball ends up in your hand,” Butler said. “Or it’s a long rebound and you just happen to be there because you’re playing so hard. At the end of the day, we just need everyone to play hard, and then you work on your technique.”

Bringing in Brooks

The Wolves announced the signing of point guard Aaron Brooks the day before media day.

Brooks has been a sparkplug throughout his nine-year career. He’s averaged 10.1 points per game throughout his career, including 11.6 just three seasons ago under coach Tom Thibodeau in Chicago.

He’s also a career 37 percent 3-point shooter and should help the Wolves spread the floor when he’s on the floor.

“I think the shooting is something that we need,” Thibodeau said. “The fact that he’s been such a good pick and roll player his whole career, so, I like that spark. He’s a guy when he comes into a game, it doesn’t take him five minutes to warm up.”

The compliments went right back to Thibodeau via Brooks. Brooks has been around a lot of coaches, and he has nothing but good things to say about Thibodeau.

 “He knows his stuff,” Brooks said. “ . . . When players ask questions, some coaches don’t have answers for them . . . He’s pretty steady with what he does.”

Brooks will be looking for minutes behind Jeff Teague at the point guard position, along with third-year Wolf Tyus Jones.

Other important stuff

  • Butler was not pleased with the Denver Broncos and the Pittsburgh Steelers losing in the NFL today. Butler is buddies with wide receivers Demaryius Thomas and Antonio Brown.
  • For the second straight day, forward Nemanja Bjelica had a solid day of practice. Bjelica missed the end of last season with a broken bone in his left foot.
  • Muhammad was spotted at a Minnesota Lynx playoff game earlier this month. The Lynx played in Game 1 of the WNBA Finals on Sunday in Minneapolis and Muhammad voiced his support: “I love being around hoops, especially the Lynx. They’ve been a great team pretty much (through) the years I’ve been here.”

The team will be back at it tomorrow. So will Timberwolves.com because that’s our job.