Wolves Aren’t Bad, They’re Young
It’d be easy to say that the Timberwolves are bad, but that simply isn‘t the case. At 1-10 on the season, it’s easy to make that assumption, but if you look closely, you’ll see that they aren’t bad, but simply a young team struggling to finish off games.
They’ve been close in nearly every single game, and if games only went three quarters, they may be above the .500 mark. Unfortunately for them, games are played with four quarters, and each time the fourth quarter starts, the Wolves seem to fall apart.
So far in eleven games, their average margin of defeat is nine points. But, even this number is a little deceiving.
Take the Lakers game for example. The Wolves were leading, or down by a few baskets up until the last four or five minutes in the game. Then, they went on a slump, the Lakers built a bigger lead, and the Wolves ultimately gave them about six more points on free throws to cap off the game.
This has been the story in more than a handful of games this season.
The Wolves leading, tied, or right in the game up until the final five minutes of the game. They go cold, and give the other team a run. They then finish the game by fouling, making the final score look worse than the game really was.
With experience, the Wolves should improve with their late game mishaps. The most recent game against the Hawks might have been one of the Wolves best and worst games of the season, and it really showed how being young, not bad is the reason for losing.
After one half of play, the Wolves lead the Hawks by 18 points, with a score of 63-45. Al Jefferson was perfect shooting, and had 18 points and 11 rebounds. It seemed as though there was no way they could blow the game, but inexperience helped them do just that.
They came out cold in the second half, and scored just 12 points in the third quarter. The Hawks scored just 19, so they still lead by 11 going into the final quarter.
In the final quarter of play, things just got worse. The Hawks outscored the Wolves 30-12, and the Wolves lost by a final score of 94-87. Effectively blowing an 18-point halftime lead.
The reason for the lost wasn’t because the Wolves are bad, but because they don’t have a lot of chemistry or experience. The Hawks effectively shutdown Jefferson with triple-teams in the second half, and the Wolves didn’t know how to handle it. They should have found other ways to score, but they just didn’t know how.
As they play more together, and get Foye back as a late-game weapon, the Wolves should improve. It might be easy to get upset with the team at times, but eventually they’ll play the second half like they do the first, and pick up some victories.
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