The Timberwolves are in the middle of the playoff pack and enjoying their best campaign in years but there have been several concerning elements at play through the first two months of the regular season, which Bryan Kalbrosky of HoopsHype has discussed in a recent feature.
Four Timberwolves fall on the league’s top-ten list for minutes played. That inevitably comes at the cost of bench player minutes and potentially even team chemistry.
Another potentially problematic trend is how little involvement Karl-Anthony Towns is getting within the Timberwolves’ set offense. While Towns has quickly established himself as one of the league’s prized young stars, he’s running all over the court and getting little opportunity to score in the paint to show for it.
The 22-year-old Timberwolves center, Kalbrosky writes, has logged more miles than any other five in the league but gets the 23rd-most touches in the paint among big men.
There’s more from the Northwest Division:
- Among Timberwolves players who’ve seen their playing time shrivel under the tutelage of head coach Tom Thibodeau is Jamal Crawford, Sam Amick and Michael Singer of USA Today write. The three-time Sixth Man of the Year has played just 17.5 minutes per night this season versus the 26.3 he saw last year with the Clippers.
- The Thunder haven’t exactly hit the ground running since pairing Carmelo Anthony and Paul George with Russell Westbrook. Now Anthony, the elderstatesman of the trio, has started coming to terms with the fact that his days of being the undisputed No. 1 option may be behind him. “For the most part, it’s just accepting the fact that you’re not going to be the man every single night or have to be the man every single night,” Anthony told Brian Lewis of the New York Post. “So for me, I’ve accepted that.”
- Big man Jusuf Nurkic has been out of action for the Trail Blazers since injuring his ankle on Tuesday but X-rays have come back negative, an ESPN report says. There is currently no timetable for his return.