Updates from Saturday, March 1
The Timberwolves announced Martin will return for Saturday night's game:
To recap, Pek and Martin will both be available to play tonight. Pek has missed the last 13 games while Martin has sat out the past seven.— Timberwolves PR (@Twolves_PR) March 1, 2014
Updates from Tuesday, Feb. 11
Sam Amick of USA Today reports that Kevin Martin will have his thumb reevaluated in two to three weeks:
T-Wolves guard Kevin Martin saw a hand specialist this week for broken left thumb & will be re-evaluated in two to three weeks, I'm told.— Sam Amick (@sam_amick) February 11, 2014
The Minnesota Timberwolves have a battle on their hands to earn a playoff spot in the ultra-competitive Western Conference, but they suffered a tremendous blow when the news broke that shooting guard Kevin Martin had suffered a broken thumb.
According to Mark Remme of Timberwolves.com, Martin suffered a non-displaced fracture of a bone in his left thumb and will be sidelined indefinitely.
Martin broke his thumb in the final minutes of a loss to the New Orleans Pelicans, and his absence is very disheartening for head coach Rick Adelman and his players.
Can the T'Wolves make the playoffs without Martin?
Minnesota entered the season as a trendy pick to make the playoffs, but it has cooled off considerably after a hot start to the 2013-14 campaign.
None of that uninspiring play has been Martin's fault, however, as he is is 22nd in the league in scoring with an average of 19 points per game. He is the Timberwolves' second-leading scorer, but his value is the great floor spacing he provides.
Martin is Minnesota's best three-point shooter, and neither of his possible replacements in the starting lineup (Chase Budinger, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute or Alexey Shved) are shooting over 34 percent from downtown, which pales in comparison to Martin's 40 percent stroke from beyond the arc.
The Wolves are currently five-and-a-half games behind the eighth seed, and that climb up the standings will be much more challenging without Martin in the fold.