Minnesota Timberwolves

For the Die Hard Fans of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Their Journey Towards Success

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Kris Dunn Actually Had a Good Rookie Season

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          How can Kris Dunn had a good season with the Timberwolves if statistically he is not even a good player? Dunn's average are 3.8 PPG, 2.4 APG, 2.1 RPG, .5 BPG, 1.0 SPG at 17.1 MPG which resulted into an 8.13 Player Efficiency Rating. Thibs drafted him because he thought to be the replacement of Ricky Rubio this season in which he actually is not as of the moment. So what did Kris Dunn actually contributed to the team? and how is his season considered to be a good one?

His Defensive Contribution

          Although not shown statistically through steals and blocks, Kris Dunn is one of out best defenders in the the team in fact he is 2nd to Gorgui Dieng (Well he is 12th in the League in Defensive Points Saved) according to NBA Math. Still not good enough? He is ranked 3rd out of the 88 first year players when it comes to defensive contribution coming after Joel Embiid and Dorian Finney-Smith, which is first and second respectively. What he can't contribute in offense is made up with his defensive efforts in the court.

          Still not good enough? He is in the top 100 in the league that contributes mostly in defense (76th to be exact) in which players like Alex Len, Manu Ginobli, Clint Capela are ranked lower than him.

          So where does he go from here? Kris Dunn is 23 years old what he showed in the Summer League was not seen in the season, although he have good games in which he almost had a triple-double vs. Denver and his last game which he had a double-double with 16 assist against Houston, he need to be consistent not only in defense but also in offense. Having difficulties transitioning his A-game to the league he shot awfully having 37% FG percentage and 28.8% 3PT.

          Being a shutdown defender is there. What he needs to be a perfect starting point guard is to start improving his offensive skills this offseason. He might also want to take up some pointers with Ricky Rubio about improving his passing skills to have an offensive improvement overall. 

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Free Agency Series: Derrick Rose and Why He Does Not Fit.

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          The rumors regarding about the Minnesota Timberwolves trying to lure Derrick Rose out of New York this offseason might be one of the biggest names linked to us, aside from having P.J. Tucker being interested in joining us next season. However signing Derrick Rose might make the team worst rather than do better in many ways.

We Already Three Point Guards

          Having Ricky Rubio as a starter and both Kris Dunn and Tyus Jones share minutes together at the point guard position, by adding Derrick Rose to the lineup it would be hard to mix up the minutes with these 4 people, and moving someone at the shooting guard position won't be a good option as the best 3pt shooter out of the four will be Ricky Rubio.

He Will Be a Liability

          Derrick Rose's career is plagued with injuries. Torn his right meniscus twice, torn his ACL in the left knee. Now he torn his left meniscus. I don't think his knees will hold up for a full season with the team, even though he contributes to the game the Timberwolves cannot afford another season ending injury with him again. 

He Will Just Take Up a Lot of Cap Space

          Derrick Rose will be entering his first free agency after 8 years being in the NBA, Rose is expected to be seeking to have a bigger contract. But in the news report Derrick Rose is willing to accept a pay cut, the question is how much is he willing to get in order to agree a contract? It does not matter because he will still take a lot of our cap space. Why spend our big portion of the $32,000,000 cap space on one player? A cap so big we can sign 2 or 3 veteran role players.


          Not unless Derrick Rose wants to accept a huge pay cut and a bench role, I don't think Derrick Rose would be a great fit with the Minnesota Timberwolves. We really need to improve our 3 point shooting and defense and he can't provide both of it, even Ricky Rubio is a better 3 point shooter than Rose. 

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Timberwolves' D-League Affiliate will get a New Identity.

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          According to Travis Hine's tweet Iowa Energy is set to have a makeover due to the acquisition of the Minnesota Timberwolves' owner Glen Taylor. The new identity of the Iowa Energy will include the name, logos, and woodmarks.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Other Options If Rubio Asked for a Trade

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          There is  news circulating around the web that Ricky Rubio has changed agent from Dan Fegen to Jeff Schwartz which can signify a trade since the new agent is more experienced agent, adding up to the news Darren Wolfson have a source telling that Ricky Rubio is demanding for a trade out of Minnesota. Maybe all the trade rumors each season got to him making him feel bad about both the fans and management.

          But setting it aside if Rubio is gone with the team it would set the franchise back on square one, having a glaring hole in the Point Guard position will most likely make the team less fluid, also Rubio is the leader in the team although he is still a 26 years old he is the longest Wolf in the team (aside from Pekovic). He is a pass first point guard which is rare in the league. Without him the team will be at a disadvantage on both ends on the floor.

          Assuming that Kris Dunn is not yet ready to assume the role as a starter and also assuming that we only receive draft picks and a bench player out of Ricky Rubio as we all know we won't get an equal amount of value if Rubio really wants out of the team, We still have a lot of options on filling the point guard position this offseason.

Plan A : Signing a Free Agent
          This should be really our first option as this upcoming Offseason a lot of key point guards are available in the market also almost all of them are Unrestricted Free Agents. With this we surely know that we are not making a gamble as we have seen what they can do in the league. But who can replace Ricky Rubio? Well eliminating some of the Free Agents like Steph Curry, Chris Paul, and Kyle Lowry because obviously they want to play for the best contending team possible what we have left is.

1.  Jeff Teague - 15.3 PPG, 7.8 APG, 4.0 RPG, 1.2 APG  19.24 PER

     Jeff Teague has proven that he is a good player even if not playing for the Hawks he is also an experienced basketball player playing for eight seasons in the league, which his season in Indiana being his best season yet even at the age of 28. Even though he will be an Unrestricted Free Agent there would still be a possibility that he will re-sign with his hometown team which is the Pacers. But who knows the Pacers are looking for a change as they got eliminated in the first round of the playoffs.

2. Patty Mills -  9.5 PPG, 3.5 APG, 1.8 RPG, .8 SPG   15.28 PER

     Is Patty Mills ready to take a starting role in to another team next season? Right now he proved to us that he can fill up the place of Tony Parker in Spurs after his injury. Still young at 28 Patty Mills can run the floor very well. Also good at the defensive end having a .011 Defensive Win Share rating in the NBA. If the contract is right him playing for the team might be possible.

3. Jrue Holiday - 15.4 PPG,  7.3 APG, 3.9 RPG, 1.5 SPG  17.19 PER

     The Timberwolves might be taking a gamble by signing Jrue Holiday as he have yet to play for a whole season due to being prone to injury as his last 82 games season was his 2nd year in the league. He might be also the most expensive option out of the three players. But he can be the point guard we need as he is much a better shooter than Ricky Rubio.  

Plan B : Drafting a Point Guard
          Not the best of the options as the Timberwolves will be having a gamble yet again. Having to draft a unproven point guard might make or break the Timberwolves future again. Also there still might be a lot of better players aside from what we need. It is always a good option of drafting the best fit for the team rather than drafting someone hoping to replace another starter.

1. De'Aaaron Fox - 16.7 PPG, 4.6 APG, 4.0 RPG, 1.5 SPG 

     Likely to be pick before out turn to pick in the Draft. De'Aaron Fox is the 3rd Best Point Guard available in the draft right after Markelle Fultz and Lonzo Ball. Although being 3rd in the ranking he is one of the best point guards out there. The downside is he won't provide as the 3pt shooting we need as he prefers to be driving to the basket.

2. Dennis Smith Jr. - 18.1 PPG, 6.2 APG, 4.6 RPG, 1.9 SPG

     The 4th best point guard in the draft might be a better option for us, as Dennis Smith Jr. have both the physical tools and potential to be the better point guards out there. However his decision making between plays is needs to improve in order to start in the NBA, as his Turn Overs per game is 3.3. His defense is also a question.

3. Frank Ntilikina -  5.2 PPG, 1.4 APG, 2.1 RPG, .8 SPG

     At the age of 18 Frank Ntilikina is still raw on his game but has the physical tools to become successful in the NBA, at 6'5" and a Wingspan of 7 ft. Playing only 18.2 MPG Ntilikina did not failed to show his best. Playing unselfish basketball he is one of rawest Pure Point Guards in the draft.

          I would still prefer signing a Free Agent if Rubio decides to be traded. Besides we still have Kris Dunn to develop his game as he is a good defensive player the only thing left is to increase his production on par with his minutes. The Ricky Rubio news is not yet official but the good thing is we have something to fall back with just in case it happens.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Who Would be Available at the 7th Pick?

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          The Minnesota Timberwolves unsurprisingly have moved up again in the NBA Draft Lottery. Originally positioned to pick 6th in the Draft we are now picking at 7th in this upcoming Draft in June. The Timberwolves have never improved position in the NBA Draft, dropping 11 times out of the 21 Draft Lotteries that the Timberwolves have participated. The good thing about moving up is we will have a cheaper rookie contract on whoever will we pick up with it.

          But at 7th we still have a lot of talented Basketball Players to choose from. Setting aside the obvious top picks namely Markelle Fultz, Lonzo Ball, Josh Jackson, Jayson Tatum, and De'Aaron Fox ( Assuming that Draft Workouts from NBA teams won't affect the Draft) they are pretty much set to be chosen ahead before its our turn. So who will be available for us when out time is ticking? (Ranked at best fit for the team).

1. Jonathan Isaac (SF/PF)
          Standing at 6'10" and a 7'1" Wingspan, Jonathan Isaac might be one of the best defensive prospect out there if not the best. With a 9 ft standing reach his body is good defensively but he needs to bulk up a lot of weight before the NBA season starts. The Timberwolves seriously need to improve their interior defense as Karl-Anthony Towns is not enough to protect the rim, and he might be the fix the team is looking for. Although know for his defensive ability he is also good in the offensive end, averaging 12 PPG at 59 FG% and 34.8% 3PT% he is efficient with his shot.

2. Lauri Markkanen (PF/C)
          Dubbed as the next Dirk Nowitzki for his range at the height of 7 ft. Markannen shot 54.5% from the inside and and 42.2% from the outside making 1.9 triples out of his 4.4 Attempts. If the Minnesota Timberwolves drafted him, he and Towns would create a lot of space as they both can shoot from the inside and outside. The only problem is he hardly defends the paint as a 7 ft player he only average .5 BPG. Markkanen is a good offensive player but he really needs to improve his off-ball performance to make him a better fit in the Team.

3. Malik Monk (SG)
          If the Timberwolves are looking for a perimeter shooter than look no more, Malik Monk is the best perimeter shooters out there making 39.7% of his 3s in his freshmen career he once made an 8 out of his 12 3 pointers in a game also finishing 47 points in the game against UNC. The problem is with his size and built he lacks to show a defensive presence in the game. Having a smaller wingspan than his height will give him a hard time defensively. Likely to be gone before our time, if Jonathan Isaac is not available then getting Malik Monk is the 3rd best option.

Wild Card

4.  Ike Anigbogu
          Probably one of the high risk high reward players to enter the Draft. Standing at 6'10" with a Wingspan of 7'6" he averaged 4.7 PPG ,4.0 RPG, and 1.2 BPG in 13 MPG coming of the bench, Ike did not have a good amount court time because of injuries and a deep bench. But within the 13 minutes on the court he showed that he is an efficient and useful player for the Bruins. His averaged in a 40 minute game would bump up to 14.5 PPG, 12.4 RPG (4.4 ORPG),  and 3.7 BPG. He is both good offensively and defensively in the court and always shows effort to grab the offensive rebound.If he is a starter in UCLA he might be able to show that he is a Lottery Pick.


Friday, May 12, 2017

The Timberwolves Need Gallo to Complete an All-Foreigner Starting Five

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          The decision of Danilo "Gallo" Gallinari opting out of his last season is eminent as he himself said that he wants to see what his value in the Free Agency is like. The one piece that made the Carmelo Anthony shift to New York from Denver Nuggets is him and he build a pretty solid performance with them as he averaged in 6 seasons in Denver 16.83 PPG, 4.4 RPG,  2.13 APG,  .85 SPG. 31 MPG. Hoping to land a max contract this coming Free Agency period he would like get it but from what team will he play next?

Gallo is Still Young

          Gallo at 28 does not even feel like playing at his prime yet with his last 2 seasons being his highest scoring and one of his most proficient scoring seasons as he averaged .43% and .38 3PT% in his last 2 seasons in the NBA. Being young fits to the timeline of the Minnesota Timberwolves for their future as a contender in the NBA. He can be the future veteran that the Timberwolves need as he has experienced playoff games in his tenure as a Nugget. He is also a forward that can shoot 3s even beyond the the 3 point line. 

Knows How to take Advantage with his Body

          Danilo Gallinari at 6'10" knows how to use his body from post moves to guarding smaller sized forwards during match ups. He can also guard almost any position because of his versatility in the court. One of his ability is slicing up the defense in order to score a basket when needed. 

The All-Foreigner Starting Five

          The Minnesota Timberwolves if you have not notice is the most talented team ran by almost non-american starters, making it thrilling to see how other players outside from the US can play a good game of basketball. Let us see what the Timberwolves will look like if Galinari is in the Line-Up

PG- Ricky Rubio  (Spain)
SG- Andrew Wiggins (Canada)
SF- Danilo Galinari   (Italy)
PF- Gorgui Dieng (Senegal)
C- Karl-Anthony Towns (Dominican Republic)

          Having Gallo on the line-up will complete the Starting Five of the Minnesota Timberwolves with all foreigners in the court. This can be a great basketball team that can be a talk of the town. 

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Free Agency Series: Is Rudy Gay the Veteran We Need?

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          After only playing 30 games with the Sacramento Kings which was cut short by a season ending injury Rudy Gay chooses to opt out to his $14,263,566, in which he intend to look for a team that he can sign for a long term deal with a considerable salary cut. According to his manager he intends to play for a team that can giver him a long term contract or even a short term one to increase his value.

Timberwolves Will Get a Steal

          Rudy Gay in his last 30 games played with Sacramento Kings averaged 18.7 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 2.8 APG, 1.5 SPG in just 33 Minutes on the court. Even thought he will become a 31 years old next season there is still a lot of fuel left in the tank.  Also what I previously stated he is willing to accept a salary deduction in order to get a long term deal, sounds a Win-Win situation with the Timberwolves. 

He Can Play a Stretch Four Position

          Rudy Gay can playe the power forward position making our team have an option to play small ball, he is more athletic and explosive compared to Gorgui Dieng. We also have the option to bench either of them depending on what play Coach Thibodeau wants the team to play.

He Will Give Us A Lot of Cap Space Left

          Previously stated on my earlier post the Timberwolves have a lot of Cap Space/Room to work with this Offseason with $33,877,654 to be exact signing Rudy Gay on the Team won't hurt the Cap Space too much because of what contract he wants. Playing on a long term deal on a budget the Timberwolves can sign a few extra pieces to improve the roster or can plan ahead with the extensions of our Stars with the Cap Space remaining with the team. 

Monday, May 8, 2017

Ricky Rubio is Better Than Derrick Rose

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          It is the Offseason Time again with the Minnesota Timberwolves, and their is this one bizarre rumor in which Thibodeau is likely to sign Derrick Rose as a Starting Point Guard of the Timberwolves, and Thibs would likely trade away Rubio or waive his contract with still 2 remaining seasons under it. I would say Bizarre because having Derrick Rose start over Rubio will not actually make the team any better in anyway. And this are the reasons why.

Rubio is a Better 3 Point Shooter

          Rubio is actually a better 3 point shooter than Derrick Rose, whom only made 13 out of his 60 attempts beyond the arc which translates to 21.7 3PT%. Rubio on the other hand made 30.6 3PT% of his 3 point attempts.

Can He Make His Team Better?

          Simple answer is no, Rose is one of those Point Guards that rank last in assist to pass ratio in which he ranks 35th at 10.9% which translates to that every time he pass the ball 10.9% chance of it will become an assist.  in the league that even bench players rank higher than him. Ricky Rubio is ranked 6th in assist to pass ratio that is 16.5% which translates to that every time he pass their is 16.5% chance that it will become an assist. John Wall, James Harden, Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul, Jeff Teague are the only ones rank higher than Ricky. 

          Rose's 4.4 APG is no match for Rubio's 9.1 APG which clearly says that Rose cannot make his teammates better when he is on the court. 

Rose does not Play Defense 

          Rose is one of the worst defenders in the league as he is much focus on the offensive end on the floor, while Rubio is one of the best defenders in his position from being a lock-down defender to a hustle player he won't make the one he is guarding easily score points. 

          Luckily the Timberwolves did not accept the trade with the New York Knicks in which they even offered Rose straight up for Rubio, one signal that Knicks is demanding more for the former MVP, I would like to have Derrick Rose in the team but for a reasonable contract only, being injury prone and all he must know that his time to play in the court should be limited and needs to accept a bench role of any team.

Free Agency Series: 2017-2018 Cap Space

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The Cap Space Situation

          The Minnesota Timberwolves have not maximize their Salary Cap for 2016-2017 season, failing to sign Luol Deng in the team left them a cap space of 12,437,000$. A big amount in which will be useful for their Free Agency Shopping next off season. But is the 12,437,000$ only our cap space for next season? Luckily we still have ways to increase our cap space to improve our team considerably. Maximizing our Salary Caps Space will look like this. 

Current Cap Space : $12,437,000
          Like what I previously said will be transferred over for the next season. 

Non-Guaranteed Contract : $4,180,000 (Jordan Hill) 
          Jordan Hill signed a 2 year / 8 million dollar contract with the Minnesota Timberwolves in which the 2nd year has a Team Option that they can decline. Now Jordan Hill did not show enough contribution to be part of the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Medical Retirement : $11,600,000 (Nikola Pekovic)
          Nikola Pekovic missed the entire 2016-17 season because of his chronic ankle injury. Also saying a statement that he is more prepared in ending his career than returning.

Out-Going Timberwolves Players

Brandon Rush : $3,500,000
Adreian Payne : $2,022,240
Omri Casspi :    $138,414

Total Projected Cap Space for 2017-2018 Season : $33,877,654

What if Shabazz Muhammad accepted a Qualifying Offer of the Team?

          Shabazz Muhammad is a 4th year player that was picked in the first round giving the Minnesota Timberwolves the chance to sign an extension of 1 year via the Qualifying Offer Contract. Which if accepted, the next year's salary of Muhammad will be $4,187,599

Total Projected Cap Space for 2017-2018 Season: $29,690,055 (if Muhammad is part of the team next season)
          The Timberwolves have a big cap space next season. The question is will they spend now or save it in order to secure the contract of Towns, Wiggins, and Lavine. Without a doubt the Timberwolves need to spend the 90% of their cap space, but who will they sign this upcoming off season? 

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Free Agency Scenario Acquiring Alan Williams

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          Alan "Big Sauce" Williams is one of those good basketball players in which he's not getting the attention he deserve, being a bench player behind Alex Len and playing for a non-playoff team may be the reasons why. But the undrafted Power Forward has shown in the league that he deserves to be an NBA player. Before being signed by the Phoenix Suns in a contract, Big Sauce was a player in the Chinese Basketball Association who averaged 20 PPG, and 15 RPG for over the 35 games he played.

How Good is Alan Williams? Is He better than Gorgui Dieng? 

Alan Williams    2016/2017 Stat  19.59 PER      
          7.4 PPG, 6.2 RPG, .5 APG, .7 BPG, .6 SPG,  15 MPG   .515 FG%  .625 FT%

Gorgui Dieng    2016/2017 Stat  14.19 PER
          10 PPG, 7.9 RPG,  1.9 APG, 1.2 BPG, 1 SPG  32 MPG  .502 FG%  .814 FT%

          Seeing the side by side comparison of their statistics in the regular season I can say that production wise Alan Williams is near what Gorgui Dieng is producing in 32 minutes in the court in which he only needed half of the minutes Gorgui is playing. The only thing Dieng is better at Williams is his FT%, we all know that the Power Forward is a position in which you commonly get calls at in the post. Alan Williams only makes 62.5% of his free throws. 

What does his Game Look Like? 

Post Moves


Follow-Up /  Tip-ins

          Alan Williams as a power forward has it all for his position. He knows how to use his size to his advantage, being a smaller size PF in 6'8" he uses floaters in which making his shots harder to block, some might also say he has mastered the are of floater jump shots. Also even though being a small sized power forward he has always managed to grab offensive rebounds in which 2 out of his 6 rebounds per game are offensive boards, also he has always has a touch for follow-ups./ tip-ins in the game. 

The Problem?

          Sure Alan Williams would be a great fit for the Wolves, but acquiring him might be a problem for Minnesota, not because of the money but because of being a Restricted Free Agent. And we all know the Timberwolves has nothing good to lose in their arsenal if they are trying to acquire him in a sign and trade with Phoenix. And I don't think that Thibodeau will trade in our 6th pick in the draft for a 24 year old power forward. 

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Former Timberwolf, Will Be Part of the Philippine National Team

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          Greg Smith last played for the Minnesota Timberwolves who he played for 18 games in which he averaged 2.4 PPG, 2.3 RPG, .3 APG,  10 MPG. After his last season in the NBA he decided to play for Istanbul BSB in which he averaged 6.86 PPG, 5.43 RPG, 1.43 APG,  20 MPG before ending up in the Philippines in which may be his best career as of the present time. Greg Smith was signed as an import by a PBA team Blackwater Elite in which he averaged 26.5 PPG, 22.15 RPG, 4.75 APG, 1.12 SPG, 1.12 BPG,  43 MPG.

          The Philippines is one of the most dominant Asian National Basketball Teams as of present time sitting next to China in the Rankings, is now facing a next level of Basketball as FIBA decided to change the league competition in which they have also add OCEANIA region in which it includes the countries Australia and New Zealand. The Philippines have no time to become comfortable even in the South East Asian Region in which only one team will qualify for the Asian Cup that will start in August 8, 2017. Before the Philippines was only sending Filipino College Players to represent in SEABA but after the competition rules changed they have decided to send in the National Team. Greg Smith was only invited as a practice player for the National Team "Gilas" in which his role is to prepare their Naturalize Player that is also a former NBA player Andray Blatche. But Blatche, 30, recently got a newborn son in which he needs to take care of and due to personal reasons decided not to show up at practice one week before the SEABA competition.

Philippine National Team Accomplishments


           Greg Smith as of today agreed verbally to be the next naturalized player of the Philippines. Right now the only thing in the way is the Legal Process of being a naturalized citizen in the Philippines in which the national team are in hope to bring up in speed and make Greg Smith's naturalization process be prioritize for the upcoming competition. Right now the only thing Greg can do for the national team is to be a practice player for them.

          Greg Smith an undrafted NBA player has found his place in the Philippines in what he said was a "blessing" to be part of. The 26 years who is still young plans to play with the Philippines until 2023.

Here is a Greg Smith Highlight in the Philippine Basketball Association in which he scored 40 pts.

The Future That We Could Have vs. What We Had

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What We Had

          2011 NBA Draft was a year full of hidden gems in the Draft Pool but majority of the teams did not know it including the Minnesota Timberwolves. Some might even say that after Kyrie Irving and Derrick Williams it was a shallow draft (Uhmm They were wrong about Derrick). The 2010-11 Season the Minnesota Timberwolves had the worst record having 17 wins and 65 losses in which in return they have the best chance of choosing the # 1 pick of the draft but we ended up picking #2 and with that pick we ended up choosing.......

Derrick Williams
11-12 Stat  8.8 PPG, 4.7 RPG, .6 APG, .5 SPG, .5 BPG,  21 MPG
12-13 Stat  12 PPG, 5.5 RPG, .6 APG, .6 SPG, .5 BPG,   24 MPG

          We ended up picking Derrick William a product of the University of Arizona in which they draw comparisons of Michael Beasley in his game they even said that he was a version 2.0 of him, which I doubt why we draft him because we have Michael Beasley currently in the team. But that comparison is where it failed because we ended up having a prototype of Michael Beasley in which we can't rely on both scoring and defending. Also a big disappointment on his 2nd year in which we thought will be his breakout season but we barely see any improvements on his game.

What We Should Have Gotten

Klay Thompson
11-12 Stat  12.5 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 2.0 APG, .7 SPG, .3 BPG,  24.4 MPG
12-13 Stat  16.6 PPG, 3.8 RPG, 2.2 APG, 1.0 SPG, .5 BPG, 35.8 MPG

          Klay Thompson was drafted by the Golden State Warriors which ended up as a steal in the 11th pick of the 2011 NBA Draft. This player was even better at Derrick Williams in terms of being a better shooter in the game having both Mid and 3 point shooting above .400 in his rookie year. It would have help the Timberwolves in terms of shooting, just like how it helped the Golden State Warriors until now, being one of the 2 Splash Brothers it says it all. 

Kawhi Leonard
11-12 Stat  7.9 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 1.1 APG, 1.3 SPG, .4 BPG,  24 MPG
12-13 Stat  11.9 PPG,  6 RPG, 1.6 APG, 1.7 SPG, .6 BPG,  31.2 MPG

          Kawhi Leonard was the 15th pick that was chosen by the Indiana Pacers that was traded to the San Antonio Spurs for George Hill which was a good trade for the both of them, but in return the Spurs had another Franchise Player in the making in which is not only good Offensively but also is good in the Defensive End. Also comparing to Derrick Williams his shooting is considerably better than him having almost .5 FG% and. .376 3P%. Kawhi could have been the Superstar Wing that we can pair up for Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio ( He is better than Andrew Wiggins as of the moment). He was also one of the All-Rookie First Team.

Jimmy Butler
11-12 Stat  2.6 PPG, 1.3 RPG, .3 APG, .3 SPG, .1 BPG,  8.5 MPG
12-13 Stat  8.6 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 1.4 APG, 1 SPG, .4 BPG,  26 MPG  

          Honestly his stat sheet for the first 2 seasons is not appealing to the eyes of many but he ended up being the Most Improved Player of 2015. The last pick of the first round of the 2011 NBA Draft, this player at age 27 is a veteran and also a leader of the team in which the Bulls chose him over Derrick Rose as their Franchise Cornerstone. He could have also save the Timberwolves from being a lottery team at this present time. 

We Could Have the 2 of Them

          Remember in the 2011 NBA Draft the Minnesota Timberwolves have two first round picks which are the #2 and #20 picks. Now imagine if we did not screwed up both of our draft picks at that night we could have been a Championship Team Right now. Let as assume that we pick up Kawhi Leonard at  #2 and Jimmy Butler at #20, our team should look like this on season 2011-2012 

Projected Lineup
PG- Ricky Rubio
SG- Jimmy Butler
SF- Kawhi Leonard
PF- Kevin Love
C-  Nikola Pekovic

          This might be the best team put up in this Franchise History this team is better than the Big 3 of Miami or even what the Golden State Warriors have. If we end up having this kind of lineup for years, I would not mind not having Wiggins and Towns and be stuck on rebuilding mode until now. 

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

What if we have Nicolas Batum instead of Andrei Kirilenko?

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          In the 2012-13 NBA Free Agency, Restricted Free Agent Nicolas Batum and Minnesota Timberwolves reached an agreement of a 4 year / $46 Million contract in which the Portland Trailblazers match the offer afterwards. If not for extending his qualifying offer Batum would be an Unrestricted Free Agent in which being a Wolf would be inevitable. But what if the Portland Trailblazers did not match the offer that was offered to him the Minnesota Timberwolves?

Will We Make it to the Playoffs?

          After the Blazers matched the offer made by the Timberwolves, the Timberwolves immediately find another alternative for him and that is Andrei Kirilenko who was 31 at that time. Now before you judge him let us look at the stats of both players

2012-2013 NBA Stats

Nicolas Batum    - 14.3 PPG, 5.6 RPG,  4.9 APG, 1.2 SPH, 1.1 SPG  38.5 MPG

Andrei Kirilenko - 12.4 PPG, 5.7 RPG,  2.8 APG, 1.5 SPG, 1.0 BPG  31 MPG

          Honestly there is no much of a difference between the production of both players are making, the big difference is Kirilenko is making the same production at a shorter time in the court. Also one of the major difference is shooting in which the 3P% of Kirilenko is .292 and Nicolas Batum is .372 which is a big difference that will obviously help the Timberwolves in their shooting problem.

          So will we make it to the 2012-2013 with Nic Batum around? My answer is no, even if Batum was a better shooter than Kirilenko, Kevin Love was injured in the rest of the season (due to knuckle push ups). Having an incomplete roster that year we won't have the full support needed to compete into playoffs?

          But will we make it to the 2013-2014 Playoffs? Possibly, having both Pekovic and Kevin Love healthy in the court at the same time will make the team win games. With the original Lineup we are the 10th seed in the Western Conference with a 40-42 record. Here is the look of the projected 2013-2014 Starting Lineup
                               Bench Role Players
PG - Ricky Rubio                 JJ Barea
SG - Corey Brewer                Shabazz Muhammad
SF - Nicolas Batum               Luc Mbah a Moute
PF - Kevin Love
C  - Nikola Pekovic              Gorgui Dieng

          Are you loving the line up? I got to admit it with this lineup I must say the Timberwolves are only 1 key player away for being a contender in the West. With this lineup we could have reached 6th or 7th seed winning 50 games or more. With this lineup Kevin Love would not ask for a Trade to Cleveland. 

We Won't have Air Canada and Towns
          To be on a positive mindset if Kevin Love did not ask for a trade we won't have Andrew Wiggins the 2014 1st Overall NBA draft pick. Cleveland know that we won't give up our franchise player without a promising player in exchange for him. It turns out to be a good trade and right now we have two #1 Draft Picks playing together in a team that can lead some time in the future. It is one of the right timing as well for KAT as Kevin Garnett was the one who mentored him in his rookie season it turned out to be well for him as he grew his game on another level. 

Monday, May 1, 2017

Free Agency 17-18 PART 2 (A Not so IN-DEPTH look)

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          While your at it I can say that the Timberwolves' Facebook page is right about saying that Karl-Anthony Towns is indeed a superhero for the Minnesota Fans out their, the last player to be ever drafted by Flip Saunders may end up to be one of his best pick yet (Sorry KG). But right now even super-heroes in the NBA need a side kick that can help them reach into playoffs, sorry but Andrew Wiggins is not enough to win Championships for this Franchise. That is why I am creating a list of NBA players here in the Free Agency that can help this Young Wolves to Win a Championship/

Roster Overhaul

          We really need to examine our roster in order to know what our weaknesses are in which are the reasons why we can't win enough games to enter the playoffs. I have identified 3 reasons why they aren't winning even though Tom Thibodeau is their coach
1. Defense - In which my previous post showed that they ranked 27th in the League
2. 3P% -  In which they ranked 20th with 34.9%
3. Leader - A veteran that can still play because Rubio is the only leader in the court, while Brandon Rush and Jordan Hill are there they are not fit to become a leader.

Potential Free Agent Signings

1. Taj Gibson (PF)  10.8 PPG, 6.2 RPG 15.07 PER
    This might be one of the possible signings that Thibs will do since he have pursued Luol Deng and Joakim Noah last season, Gibson might be one of the Chicago Bulls that he might end up bringing to Minnesota, this might be the 2nd Veteran that we are looking for who actually played in the playoffs. With him starting and Dieng on the Bench it will be an upgrade over him. He is also great in the defensive end ranking 46th in regards to win shares ( Which is higher than any Timberwolves player right now)
    16-17 Salary : $8,950,000

2. Kyle Korver (SG/SF) 10.7 PPG, 2.7 RPG, .485 3P% 12.17 PER
    Korver might be hard to be lured in a team like us, as we are not even a play-off contender. What we can offer at most is a starting role or at least more minutes for the 36 years old. Although not known for being a defensive player, his 3s is what he can bring to the team, and I know Thibs will find a way to work it out. 
    16-17 Salary : $5,239,437

3. Serge Ibaka (PF) 14.8 PPG, 6.8 RPG, 1.6 BPG 16.46 PER
    What is better than signing Taj Gibson in the team? Serge Ibaka of course, a power forward who is better in the defensive end among the two who can shoot beyond the arc. Right now Ibaka is 43rd in terms of Defensive Win Shares, the former 3X defensive first team has declined his game now but is still good that he can contribute both offensively and defensively. Also a veteran at the age of 27. He can be another leader on and off the court.
    16-17 Salary : $12,250,000

4. Shabazz Muhammad (SF) 9.9 PPG, 2.8 RPG 15 PER
    The only Free Agent in which we have the control if he will stay or switch on another team, being a restricted Free Agent the Timberwolves have the decision of matching any contracts offered to him, the final decision is if Thibs only like to match the salary he will agree on. Muhammad is one of our reliable bench guys who can score even if the rest of the starters are all resting. He also said that he wants to stay in Minnesota even though he will be testing the market.

Why these Four Players?
     I chose these four players aside from Shabazz Muhammad because they are all unrestricted Free Agents in which giving us a higher probability of signing, because let us face it Restricted FAs with teams that have the Cap Room are impossible to sign, not unless the team never wants them back. I believe that these players  are capable of giving our Team the needed help in order to be a contender in the playoffs. 

Projected Lineup if Ibaka is signed

PG- Ricky Rubio
SG- Zach Lavine
SF- Andrew Wiggins
PF- Serge Ibaka
C - Karl-Anthony Towns

     With this lineup immediately the presence of Ibaka will be felt in the defensive end, helping Towns clog the lanes and get those Rebounds, we might even see some 3 point scoring from all of the five starters. With one player and maybe a reliable draft pick we might see Timberwolves entering the playoffs.