The Timberwolves shook off all the doldrums and depressing mediocrity last year. Behind Kevin Love taking yet another leap forward and Ricky Rubio living up to the loftiest of expectations, along with Rick Adelman actually getting everyone on the same page, the Wolves were running and gunning every night. They were winning games until Rubio’s injury and played exciting, dynamic basketball.
Next year, sure there are questions. Rubio has to get back completely healthy. Love has to stay engaged and not boil over with frustration if things go poorly. They have to find someone to replace Michael Beasley. OK, I was kidding about that last one.
But sine it’s been four months since we’ve seen the Timberwolves, perhaps a reminder of just how fun they are. From NBA.com’s YouTube channel, here’s a great reason to look forward the Wolves’ season.
Did Reggie Jackson distract Jimmy Butler into missing game-tying free throw? (video)
With the Timberwolves trailing the Pistons by three and 6.2 seconds left, Jimmy Butler drew a foul on a 3-pointer.
Butler made the first two free throws then, just before he got the ball for the third, Reggie Jackson interrupted to talk to Stanley Johnson, who was in rebounding position. Butler missed the free throw, and Detroit won 100-97 after an intentional foul.
Butler said Jackson didn’t affect him, but Butler’s side eye during the delay at least appeared to speak loudly.
Bulls’ Kris Dunn dunks on T.J. Warren after savvy/explosive halfcourt drive (video)
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The Orlando Magic has decided to end their annual summer league.
Magic president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman said Sunday the trend of NBA teams playing in the Las Vegas Summer League led to the decision end Orlando Pro Summer League. Orlando’s Summer League, which showcased rookies and young players, began in 2002.
Las Vegas will host all 30 teams for the summer league beginning in the summer of 2018. The Orlando Pro Summer League began as a 10-team tournament but there were just eight participating teams this past summer.
The summer league in Orlando, which is played in the Magic’s practice gym, was the only one of three summer leagues that did not allow fans to come in to watch.
Kevin Durant misses game vs. Nets with sprained ankle, status vs. Thunder in doubt
Not that the Warriors needed him with Stephen Curry going off again, but Golden State was without Kevin Durant on Sunday in Brooklyn due to a sprained ankle.
Durant is officially day-to-day, but that brings up the question of whether he will be ready to go Wednesday night when the Warriors travel to Oklahoma City to take on his former team. Chris Haynes of ESPN asked Durant about it.
Kevin Durant (ankle sprain) tells ESPN “I’m not sure” if he’ll be able to go Wednesday at OKC: “I’m just going to take it day by day and see how it progresses.”
While some blowhards will talk about him dodging the Thunder, the Warriors course here is obvious — they do not want to rush him back for any game in November. Even one against Russell Westbrook. Ankles with stretched ligaments are easy to re-injure if not fully healed, and the Warriors don’t want this to be chronic and last through more of the season.
Durant is averaging 24.9 points per game, 7 rebounds, and 4.7 assists, and — with all due respect to fellow former MVP Curry — he is the best player on the Warriors. Maybe the best player in the world right now, period. Durant can score at will, and he had become a key part of the Warriors’ fifth-ranked defense blocking 2.2 shots per game (their offense is No. 1 in the league).