Kevin Martin was having a bounce-back season – maybe even a career-best season.
The Timberwolves shooting guard was averaging 20.4 points per game while shooting 48 percent from the field and 48 percent from beyond the arc. For a pure scorer who doesn’t contribute much else, he was filling his role exceptionally well.
But Martin’s year has hit a major snag.
Martin must have hurt hit while fouled on a 3-pointer, which he made. From that point, he scored 31 points on 12-of-16 shooting. Not bad for playing with a fractured wrist. Thank you, Knicks defense.
The Timberwolves won that game, but their season outlook isn’t as strong. They’re already missing Ricky Rubio, and Nikola Pekovic is banged up, too. At 3-7, they’re slipping further from postseason contention – which was a pipedream to begin with.
This might push Flip Saunders to trade Corey Brewer. Then again, maybe Saunders declares Brewer even more valuable to Minnesota. Who knows how desperate this team is to compete in the short term?
But the Timberwolves’ long-term prospects are fairly bright, and this should mean more time for Andrew Wiggins, Shabazz Muhammad and Brewer on the wing. Minnesota will miss Martin’s contributions now, but this will be an opportunity to develop the team’s young talent.