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Timberwolves 121, Lakers 104: ‘Twas the Evening of Christmas…

‘Twas the evening of Christmas, when on TNT,

The Wolves met the Lakers in a matchup to see.

The shoes were on point, Karl’s especially so,

A sinister grinch on green all aglow.

 

The fans were all nestled on Twitter to chatter,

About highlights and announcers, mainly the latter.

Shoutout to the handcheck, and Larry Nance, Senior,

Chuck’s southern drawl and dismissive demeanor.

 

Now Barkley, now Ernie, now Kenny and Shaq!

On anti-three rants, certifiably whack!

To the midrange jumper! To backs to the basket!

To the Gorgui Dieng three that made ’em all blow a gasket!

 

The game! Ah, Minnesota played to opponent again,

No Ball and no Ingram, no problem for them.

L.A. ran in transition, they chucked up the threes,

While the Wolves’ outside shooting was mostly diseased.

 

Friends, it was close! A one point game at the half,

Kuzma did his best on the Lakers’ behalf.

But their defense was porous as a kitchen colander,

That includes Kentavious and his black ankle monitor.

 

An early-fourth run pleased this reviewer,

A big and-1 dunk over Corey Wayne Brewer.

Tyus on fastbreaks and Jimmy distributing,

Taj on the glass, everyone contributing.

 

Then the back-breaking blows, no resistance thereafter,

A Taj corner three, and a Wiggins soon after.

Put the game out of reach, for once and for all,

So we could finally answer sleep’s beckoning call.

 

The game was much closer than what’s told by the score,

One twenty one to one hundred and four.

But a win is a win, Mr. Fenelon’s right,

HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT!

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3 thoughts on “Timberwolves 121, Lakers 104: ‘Twas the Evening of Christmas…

  1. Thought the TNT crew was pretty annoying for the most part tonight, BUT I’m glad they called out the Wolves and indirectly Thibs for them not living up to their potential. We don’t take advantage of our athleticism and get out in transition. We are not a team anyone is worried about. Yea we’ll probably make playoffs, but we’re not threatening. Just refreshing to have other people see the ugly underperforming team we are who aren’t fans.

    We have had the 29th hardest schedule in the league up to this point. Prepare yourselves for us to come crashing down. We aren’t getting that much better. However, the Thunder have turned a corner and look like a Top 3 team in the league.

    We don’t get in transition enough. Tyus really got us moving fast tonight and it was fun basketball to watch in the late 3rd and early 4th quarter. That’s what put the game away. More Tyus. Less Teague. Please.

    Towns had some sick dunks through contact tonight.

    Fire Thibs!

  2. Colander and monitor… NICE!

    This is like a thing for us this season–we’re a magnet for weak teams. Remember when we played OKC a bunch early and they clearly had not figured out how to play together? Now that they’ve figured it out, we only play them one more time, I think. Tonight’s version was playing the already not great Lakers without Lonzo Ball or Ingram. As I take an interest in young players and prospects (as well as competitive games), I was looking forward to seeing them.

    Speaking of OKC, gravity is starting to happen in the NBA. OKC is finally starting to click a bit (though I still think they have too much star redundancy, but they should be a challenging team at least with those guys). Houston and Boston are falling back to earth just a bit.

    I need to get this off my chest: Regarding the Wolves, I’m on the same WAVELENGTH as Shaq, Ernie, Kenny, and Charles. And it is interesting… they are kind of paid to bicker and have differences of opinion, yet they all seem to think we need more pace and need to stop wasting the shot clock. It was a pretty clear message from the guys and it is exactly what I think. The proof is kinda in the pudding with these games. We had a one point game at halftime in this one. It got so that we didn’t need Jimmy closing, but still against this team with 2 starters out… As the crew basically put it, by playing the way we do (slow pace, no transition, wasting most of the shot clock) we keep guys in the game we should be blowing out. And when we play difficult teams? Shaq is right though. We SHOULD play with more pace (and we ran a bit more than usual in this one…) we should value the shot clock… But Thibs isnt going to change on this stuff.

    Now, as an in-game announcing unit, those guys don’t work too well… But it’s a holiday. We do weird stuff on holidays.

    I have a bit of an obsession with Alex Caruso. He doesn’t look like he should be anywhere near a pro basketball court. That’s the opener (I think the guys joked about it in less than nice ways). That makes it more fascinating, but the bulk of it is that he’s a baller. I wish he’d get more opportunities, but at least he has the foot in the door. I’m known to be nuts, but if I was the coach, I would have started Alex with Lonzo out and split time with him and Clarkson. I saw some of Alex in preseason and really like his approach. Didn’t make an impact in this one, but hopefully he gets some opportunities to develop and show his skills.

    Kuzma is a weird player. He’s kinda fun, kinda impressive. Yet, I keep expecting him to crash to earth at any second. It’s like an impending doom type feeling. It’s also weird because they have Larry Nance Jr, and Julius Randle also at PF while starting the SFish Kuzma at PF. If the Lakers think that all those guys are certainly PF’s they should trade one. Randle maybe? He could get something on the market…

    Oh yeah, I forgot, no Lopez, either. Yikes.

    KAT looked good in this one. The numbers don’t quite express how little answer the Lakers had for him. His 4 blocks speak to his intensity on D, which was really nice to see. Again, the TNT guys were spot on—Towns in the post is easy points. In this affair, Towns was mostly guarded by the shell of himself Bogut and the undersized rookie Kuzma. Doesn’t take an expert tactician to figure out you should hammer Towns in the post. It’s amazing how inflexible we are in different situations, in the face of various opportunities (though I will admit, we got out and ran a bit more, mostly due to turnovers given to us that looked almost like down court passes). But in general, KAT should be used in the post more, and his work from the 3 point line should be more of a fun novelty. He took 6 tonight. I think that’s a lot–not because he’s bad at it (though not great) but because he’s more valuable in the post because those are such high percent shots, but also because that keeps him in position for O rebounds and opens up better looks for our three point shooters. On the topic, I didn’t see the guys’ 3 point talk as being anti three or pro long 2. I think one of them said something like, ‘NBA offense is a diet, you can’t eat just one thing.’ And too many teams (as they pointed out, without the correct skill personnel) just try to take a lot of threes, and that’s most of what they do on offense. Teams need to diversify. That doesn’t mean not taking a lot of threes–the Wolves generally don’t take enough. But I think there are too many teams that lean too much of the 3. Ironically, the team that championed this approach is the Warriors, but they actually play with a lot of different dimensions on offense and D and that’s why they are cleaning house (and it doesn’t hurt to have 2 of the greatest 3 point shooters ever on your roster along with a ton of other decent shooters). The Houstons and Bostons of the world might find 7 game playoff series a less kind genre to their style of play than regular season doldrums.

  3. The TNT crew were not fans of Thibs ball, both in the pace or shot selection. I loved Chucks ” prevent offense comment”! I thought Jeff Teague was to blame for the pace. If Tyus would not have tried to be cute with terrible oops pass on break, he probably could have finished the game and we would have won by more. As for the score, the Lakers were never a threat because they didn’t have an ability to sustain offense. Had they had the three missing starters in the game, we may have had a different outcome, which is terrible. KAT played the first half like he didn’t really want this game (maybe it was the Grinch shoes). Bogut should nor be that much of a low post deterrent to him, but KAT was way too comfortable floating out to the arc, which helped the Lakers.

    I think Wiggins needs to play more like Carmelo has lately. He is not a good Iso player, but can be more effective in a catch and shoot or one dribble and shoot play. Getting him to move without the ball, may also get him to play more aggressively on both sides of the floor. Right now, the team is playing my turn ball, and that is when they give up leads. When they passed the ball last night, they killed the Lakers. I don’t understand why they need to be selfish, when they get such great looks with ball movement.

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