Chase Budinger cleared to return to full-contact practice. Still no timetable for his return, but obvious step in right direction. #Twolves
— Timberwolves PR (@Twolves_PR) December 18, 2013
The Minnesota Timberwolves have been waiting for Chase Budinger to get healthy enough to see if the money committed and the vision of Flip Saunders this offseason would provide the necessary balance to make this more of a complete team. The thought process would be that adding Chase’s 3-point shooting and ability to catch-and-drive could be exactly what is needed to spread the floor and move the defense. When you start moving the defense side-to-side, you create space in the middle of the floor.
When you create space in the middle of the floor, you give someone like JJ Barea room to operate and someone like Dante Cunningham room to shoot that midrange jumper he loves to take. He can be good at it too, which him having all that space would probably ensure. When they’ve created all of that space in the middle of the floor, the defense will collapse and a shooter like Chase could do some damage from the perimeter. It’s a symbiotic relationship.
Budinger has been cleared for full-contact practice, which probably means we’ll see him before the New Year. Pretty close to being healthy.