Timberwolves Notes: Gobert, Back, Anderson, Offseason

Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert rejoined the team on Thursday after being suspended for Tuesday’s overtime loss to the Lakers, writes Dave Campbell of The Associated Press.

However, Gobert remains hampered by the back spams that he was experiencing on Sunday when he got into an altercation with Kyle Anderson that led to his suspension. He said he probably wouldn’t have been able to suit up on Tuesday either way, and his status for Friday’s matchup against the Thunder is up in the air.

“‘Still pretty sore, still not moving like I would like to be able to move, but small progress every day,” Gobert said.

Gobert, Jaylen Nowell (left knee tendinopathy) and Karl-Anthony Towns (right calf strain) are all questionable for Friday’s game, the team announced (via Twitter).

As for his relationship with Anderson, Gobert says they’ve moved past the incident, according to Campbell.

“We both apologized to each other and you move on. That’s life,” Gobert said. “It’s different when you have millions of people all watching videos and have an opinion on things that happened, but that we can’t control. What we can control is the respect that we have for each other and our relationship.

“I still love Kyle. He’s still my brother. I tell people, ‘Sometimes you fight with your family. Sometimes you fight with people that you have a lot of love and respect for.’ It’s life. No one is perfect. Mistakes happen and then you grow and you move on.”

Here’s more on the Wolves:

  • Anderson told reporters prior to Tuesday’s game that he and Gobert had moved on by Sunday night, tweets Chris Hine of The Star Tribune. “We definitely hashed it out,” Anderson said. “That happens all the time in sports. I feel like people are acting like they’ve never seen it before. We’re grown men. We’re able to put it behind us. We both want to win. We spoke about it that night and just seeing how everything is playing out is kind of lame, honestly. We’re teammates at the end of the day. I don’t want it to be a Kyle vs. Rudy thing. That’s never the case. I always got my teammates’ back, and we moved on.”
  • Jim Souhan of The Star Tribune downplays the significance of Friday’s play-in game against the Thunder, as he doesn’t think the Wolves stand a chance against the top-seeded Nuggets anyway even if they win and advance as the No. 8 seed. However, Souhan does believe it could be a critical moment in Gobert’s career, writing that the center’s “remarkable immaturity” on Sunday was just the latest in a string of questionable decisions the 30-year-old has made over the past few years.
  • The altercation between Gobert and Anderson wasn’t the only unfortunate incident on Sunday — Jaden McDaniels punched a wall out of frustration after picking up a couple early fouls and broke his hand. Did those events — combined with the team’s inconsistent play and a limited sample size of the Gobert/Towns pairing — make the Wolves’ offseason plans even more complicated? Michael Rand and Patrick Reusse of The Star Tribune explored that topic in a recent podcast.
  • Anderson’s on-court versatility and strong defense were key factors in the Wolves finishing with a winning record in 2022/23 despite missing Towns for most of the season. Anderson’s blunt yet effective communication style also played a role in the team’s success, as Hine writes for the Star Tribune.
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