The Timberwolves’ loss against the Mavericks last night is disappointing, but must be taken into consideration. Dirk Nowitzki and Jason Kidd’s team have as many wins, as the Timberwolves have losses. They’re not the best team in the league, but success at this stage for the Timberwolves definitely doesn’t depend on wins against the Mavericks.
Nor does it depend on the results against teams like the San Antonio Spurs, Oklahoma City Thunder, or the L.A. Lakers—the teams the Timberwolves faced at the end of November. A win against the Golden State Warriors would have been nice...but what to do?
The Timberwolves should instead be looking ahead. If they can beat the San Antonio Spurs tonight it will be a bonus, but don’t hold your breath.
Following that, they have some match ups that are definitely very winnable. There are no easy games in the NBA, but the Cleveland Cavaliers and the New York Knicks (who they beat in preseason) are both winnable games for the Timberwolves.
Also in December, are games against the Detroit Pistons, the Golden State Warriors, the Portland Trailblazers, the L.A. Clippers and the Cleveland Cavaliers again. They’re not sure-fire W’s, but the Timberwolves can go into all of the games thinking “we have a chance.”
Aiding the positivity will be a fit-again Jonny Flynn ruling things from the point. In a season that has been dominated by high-calibre point guards, he will be desperate to prove he has what it takes.
The team should also have Martell Webster back again at some point in December, which will be a massive boost. He was one of the best players for the Timberwolves in preseason.
Going against the Minnesota Timberwolves is the fact that a lot of these games are being played on the road, but if they can create some momentum, and defeat one of the more difficult teams that they’ve also got in December, then it could prove to be a successful month for the Timberwolves.
For the record, the more difficult games would be the Chicago Bulls, the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Denver Nuggets twice, the Utah Jazz and the surprisingly good New Orleans Hornets.
Last season, the Timberwolves’ had their best month in December, going into it 2-7. This year, I’m going to say, going in with four wins, I’m hoping the Wolves can start 2011 with closer to 10 wins.