Corey Brewer: Is Minnesota's Improving Guard a Starter or Role Player?

Timber WolfAnalyst IIOctober 21, 2009

LONDON - OCTOBER 10:  Corey Brewer #22 of Minnesota runs with the ball during NBA Europe Live 2007 Tour match between the Boston Celtics and the Minnesota Timberwolves at the O2 Arena on October 10, 2007 in London, England.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)

The Minnesota Timberwolves have just undergone a seriously tough first six games, mainly due to the rehabbing of Al Jefferson, the injury to Kevin Love and a few bumps and bruises here and there.

Al Jefferson is questionable with a lack of conditioning and Achilles tendinitis, Kevin Love is out with a hand injury until early December, and Wayne Ellington just recovered from an ankle injury.

With many dark spots, there has been a spot that has gotten brighter and brighter, and that's Corey Brewer.

Before, and time and time again, I as well as other NBA fans have stated that Corey Brewer has a very raw potential, meaning that he has potential, we just don't know how much.

With his past five games, Corey Brewer is playing the best ball of his career.

Last five games:

  1. 16 points, 5 rebounds, 3 steals, and 2 assists. Shooting 4-14 from the field and 8-9 from the free throw line.
  2. 12 points, 5 rebounds, 3 steals, 1 assist and 1 block. Shooting 2-7 from the field and 8-12 from the free throw line.
  3. 20 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal and 1 block. Shooting 6-13 from the field, 2-6 from the three-point line and 6-7 from the free throw line.
  4. 13 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist and 1 steal. Shooting 4-7 from the field, 2-4 from the three-point line and 3-6 from the free throw line.
  5. 23 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals, and 1 block. Shooting 7-17 from the field, 2-4 from the three-point line and 7-10 from the free throw line. He led Wolves in all categories in this game except for blocks.

He's gaining confidence, and a lot of it. He's starting to trust his shot more, which is why he's shooting more three-pointers in his last three games. Over all of preseason, he's shooting 35 percent from the three-point line, but in his past three games, he's shooting 42 percent from the three-point line.

In his third game, which I consider his breakout game at his level of play through his first two years (first 20 point game in NBA career), he's shooting at nearly the same percentage that he shot in his sophomore season, which was 41 percent from three-point land.

Last five game statline: 16.8 points, 4.6 rebounds, 2.2 steals, and 2.0 assists.

In the development of a player who's had limited roles and is just coming off an season ending injury, I'd have to say that's not half bad at all.


He's starting to show confidence on the fast break showing great finesse, as well as taking shots. Although he's stepped down a notch defensively, he's still a great defender, and is more than likely going to take a step up when the regular season starts.

He seems to catch all the bad passes from the opposition, which is why he comes up with steals, it also helps that he's a 6'9'' SG (nearly Kevin Love's height). He seems to never get tired, and is always playing at a speed faster than everyone else's, which is perfect for the likes of Ramon Sessions and Jonny Flynn.

If this team is about player development, Corey Brewer's option needs to be picked up, and then some. A player who's incredibly raw, who hasn't mastered anything, and apparently has the potential to do so, needs to be kept, regardless of the situation.

He's not a volume shooter yet, and it appears that he's not necessarily a bad one either. He's a great perimeter defender, and has little difficulty in stopping the quickest point guards like Tony Parker.

Is Corey Brewer a starter or role player?

At the moment, Corey Brewer is a role player on a championship roster. He has speed and athleticism that's rare to find in 6'9'' guards. But his potential is of that of a starter caliber.

If he can average 10-15 points during the regular season, with one or two three-point shots, then Corey Brewer is the draft pick we thought he would be, it just might be that he showed up a year late. But in the Wolves situation, very much like the Ricky Rubio situation, we prefer later rather then never.

Thanks for reading!