The Minnesota Timberwolves are a very intriguing team, led by an even more intriguing manager.
Today, the Minnesota Timberwolves battled back from a 20-point deficit to defeat the Philadelphia 76ers, a victory that spoke volumes to me on how this Wolves team can win more games this season.
They have currently played 41 games, approximately half of the NBA season. There's reason to believe that the Wolves can win 24-plus games, meaning they would have to win at least 15 out of the next 41.
Choosing not to dive into stats and just what I see in the games, I've come across a formula for the Wolves to win ballgames.
- Rebounds: With Al Jefferson and arguably the best rebounding power forward in the league, Kevin Love, the Wolves are ranked third in rebounds in the NBA. This ensures the Wolves limit possessions to one shot, and that the Wolves end up taking more shots because of crashing the offensive boards.
- Defense Dictation: When the Wolves hustle on defense, they end up getting stops and that dictates the offense, where Jonny Flynn and Corey Brewer excel the best. Kevin Love has a perfect outlet passing ability that helps the Wolves run, and it's much easier to run when you're not inbounding the ball.
- Swingman Contribution: When the Wolves get a solid night from the wing players, they are tough to beat. Wayne Ellington, Ryan Gomes, and Corey Brewer all have completely different play styles and all compliment each other. Corey Brewer has been a pleasant surprise, and Wolves fans should expect a few off nights, but his consistency will be counted on heavily for the Wolves to win games.
- Interior Hustle Defense: The combination of Al Jefferson and Kevin Love are not going to block shots, but they can contest shots on any given night. When the opposition drives to the basket, Wolves tend to collapse and open up three-point shots for the opponent. Kevin Love and Al Jefferson need to step up on the defensive end. And last but not least...
- Energy and Heart: The Wolves have lost so many games because they don't play with the energy and the hustle to win games. The Timberwolves are not a team that can put players on the floor and win because of talent. Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard.
The season can be closed out very well, and if the Wolves finish with 24-plus wins, it will be a success for them. Considering that the NBA is better as a whole, the Wolves have a new coaching staff, new roster, new leaders, and a new GM with a whole different plethora of plans, the Wolves will be on the right track to success despite losing Kevin Love for 20-plus games.
The Wolves will have a plethora of draft picks and cap room, and have a very bright future ahead of them.
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