Northwest Notes: Edwards, Wolves, Nuggets, Olynyk

The Timberwolves consider All-Star guard Anthony Edwards to be day-to-day with a sprained right ankle he suffered in Friday’s game, Marc Stein tweets.

In an interview with team broadcaster Alan Horton (Twitter link) coach Chris Finch said Edwards is in a walking boot, but the injury is “not as bad as initially feared.” He sat out tonight’s contest after being listed as questionable. More tests on the ankle will likely be conducted Sunday, tweets Chris Hine of The Star Tribune.

Edwards was injured in the first quarter Friday when he rolled the ankle after making a jump pass. He hadn’t missed a game before tonight and is the team’s leading scorer at 24.7 PPG. With 11 games remaining, a prolonged absence could be devastating for Minnesota’s playoff hopes. The Wolves are eighth in the tight Western Conference race, but are just one game ahead of 11th-place Utah.

There’s more from the Northwest Division:

  • Finch admitted the Timberwolves will have to adjust their offense while Edwards is sidelined, writes Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic. Minnesota has a 109.6 offensive rating in its minutes with Edwards on the bench, which would rank last in the league. Rudy Gobert has been scoring more since the Wolves traded for Mike Conley, notes Krawczynski, who adds that Jaden McDaniels and Jordan McLaughlin appear ready to handle a larger role in the offense. “We still have other players who can put the ball in the bucket,” Finch said. “We’ll be less of an iso team. You lose Ant’s dynamic big-shot making. Of course, you lose everything he brings. … We’ll have to rely more on ball movement, more on body movement, pass-pass combinations, those types of things.”
  • The reeling Nuggets held a team meeting this week after Tuesday’s loss at Toronto, per Mike Singer of The Denver Post. Denver remains on top of the Western Conference, but is dealing with a late-season slump, dropping five of its last six games. “Who do we want to be?’” Kentavious Caldwell-Pope said. “We can’t keep losing like this, we didn’t start off like that. It’s not the time to be losing games that we’re supposed to be winning. It’s crunch time. … It was all about just who we want to be at the end of the season. ‘Do we want to be champions or we just wanna go home?’”
  • Kelly Olynyk is valuable because he does so many underappreciated things, but the Jazz have to consider who will take over that role in the future, notes Sarah Todd of The Deseret News. Olynyk will turn 32 in April and has just a $3MM guarantee on next season’s contract.
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