Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Wolves Defeated By Bulls, Updates

The Wolves lost to the Bulls in Chicago with a final score of 111-100.

Sam Smith speculates on the 10 teams most likely to make deals for Garnett this summer.

Ricky Davis on his fine from the NBA:
"Wow, that hurts," he said.

Davis on the dude who was hit by KG's ball on Sunday:
"That's crazy," Davis said Monday. "I think he should fly out to Hollywood and get a movie set. It's kind of funny."

Dime Magazine reminisces about the 1995 McDonald All American High School game featuring Garnett.

An article on KG's career thus far.

Click here for an interview with Dwane Casey on his first year coaching in USA Today.

Glen Taylor continues to show his support for McHale.

T-Hud flew to Chicago to on Monday to see another specialist about his ankle.

Hoiberg on whether he'll return to the NBA:
"I'm getting myself to the point where I'm in pretty good shape, where if I decide to play, I'll be comfortable with that," he said. "I'm looking for thesituation that makes sense."

Former Gophers and Timberwolves point guard Bobby Jackson, in town the other day with the Memphis Grizzlies, said he would have preferred to stay with the Wolves, but they offered only a one-year, non-guaranteed contract. So he left five years ago for Sacramento.
"I wanted to be here, but they didn't want me here," said Jackson, who is in his ninth NBA season.

Click here for an article from the Star Tribune about Twin Cities native and NBA TV/Fantasy expert Rick Kamla.

KG And Ricky Davis Fined $5000

The NBA fined Garnett $5000 for swatting the ball into the stands during the Grizzlies game. Ricky Davis was fined the same amount for kicking the ball (pictured along with the dude(left) who caught it) into the crowd at Friday's loss to Denver.

Garnett issued the following statement:
"I'd like to apologize once again to the fan and his family involved in yesterday's incident at Target Center," he said. "It was never my intention to injure anyone. I have the deepest respect for the fans of the NBA and the Minnesota Timberwolves."

Season ticket holder Kelly Tempesta is the one who gave the tickets to the guy who was hit by the KG ball.

"He didn't go to work today," said Tempesta, who was in contact with his friend moments after the incident. "He wants it to be over. He is a victim, not a villain."

"He didn't know KG did it," Tempesta said. "He didn't even know it was a basketball that had hit him. KG came over and apologized and he was like, 'What are you doing here?' He was fine, but he was a little dazed."

Tempesta said his friend wanted to leave his seat under his own power but that Wolves representatives insisted on wheeling him out for precautionary reasons. To make matters more difficult, the man's daughter was upset and crying.

According to Tempesta, the man bears no grudge toward Garnett or the organization, plans no legal action and simply wants to put the incident behind him. Thus, Tempesta said, his friend was not interested in talking about the situation himself.

"He was not mad for a second at [Garnett]," Tempesta said. "He's mad at anybody who portrayed it that way. ... He's embarrassed about the whole thing. The only thing he's angry with is how the crowd reacted to him."

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Wolves Over The Weekend

"In my younger days, I'd get all riled up on a couple of plays, and then have nothing come the second half," Garnett said last week. "I learned to channel my energy in different ways. I still curse. I just don't cuss to the kids in the front row no more, you know?"

"He used to talk to me, `Keep your head up,' " Clippers forward Elton Brand said last week. "Keep working hard and hopefully your team will come around.' Now ... I know what he's going through."

Before the NBA trade deadline last Thursday, only one team asked about Garnett and that was to find out if the media rumors about his status were true.

Garnett's agent Andy Miller on recent trade rumors regarding Knicks:
"Kevin has never indicated to me anything other than wanting to remain in Minnesota," Miller said over the telephone. "I think everyone is jumping to conclusions."

Insiders say the Timberwolves' billionaire owner plans to spend whatever it takes, even far over the salary cap, this summer to make the team a contender next season.

Taylor on McHale:
"Until I find somebody better than McHale, he will run the show," Taylor said. "People forget how bad this team was when he took over. So far, nobody better has appeared."

McHale on the team's record:
"We've been in a ton of games. We just haven't found a way of sustaining any way of winning games consistently," McHale said. "I looked at it the other day, within the last six minutes of games, in 44 of the 53, we've been within four points or ahead. We just have to find a way to close games out."

Jaric made his first appearance in five games on Friday night against Denver:
"It was a good return," Casey said. "The key thing is he got his passion back. He wasn't just out there going through the motions."

Fred Hoiberg played a 4-on-4 halfcourt game after the Wolves practiced on Saturday. Still, he says that he won't make a comeback if there's any risk involved given that he has a pacemaker. In completely unrelated news, Hoiberg's also sold some Twolves cars from his dealership in Ames, IA.

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, with the approval of assistant coach P.J. Carlesimo, has mentioned possibly acquiring Sprewell.

Garnett Ejected, Wolves Still Get A Win Over Grizzlies

The Academy Of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences has announced the results in the category of best actor in a leading role. The winner is:

(Screen capture from dontfineme on KFAN Rube Chat)

During the third quarter of the game against Memphis, KG was called for an offensive foul and, reacting to the call, softly hit the ball into the stands. On the receiving end of the ball was the face of the only person in the Target Center besides the Grizzlies who didn't want to be approached by KG. The dude acted as if he'd been hit by Mike Tyson and was very ungracious in accepting Garnett's apology although it was clear to all that there was very little force behind the ball. The dude was carted out of the game to a well deserved round of boos. KG received a technical and was ejected from the game. To make matters worse, there was a little girl with the guy who was visibly upset by the events.

"By no means was I trying to hit a fan," Garnett said. "If anything I was trying to get a delay of game. Unfortunately, it happened. I apologized to the little girl and her father."

The organization apologized as did KG (again) before leaving the arena. Click here for a video clip of the incident.

Without the Ticket, Ricky Davis helped lead the team to their first victory since the all-star break with a final score of 105-99.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Wolves Lose To Nuggets In OT, Updates

If you look up "heartbreaker" in the dictionary this is what you will find. The Wolves are now 6 games behind division rival Denver who had only 9 players suited up for the game.

"We've been snakebitten a lot this year," said Garnett, who made 8-of-21 shots. "It was a difficult game. It's the league, anything can happen. (Carmelo) hit a tough, tough Powerball shot. It's like winning the Lotto and like those people who worked for the meat factory, they hit the Lotto."

This game was the first sellout of the season but these were the only happy Twolves fans in the Target Center as the dude on the left caught the ball that Ricky Davis kicked into the stands after the buzzer.

Glen Taylor in a letter to season ticket holders on why no trade was made before the deadline:
"... Ultimately we could not find enough value in the players that were being offered and were not willing to part with the players that teams requested," the owner wrote. "We could have made a trade simply to change our roster, but that would have been a knee-jerk reaction that would not have improved our situation. Instead, because there was no dominant-player deal that fit our philosophy, we all agreed that our best course of action was to give our team time to gel and make the dash for the finish line together.

"Have no doubt, we are still committed to building a team that you can be proud of, a team that will make it back to the playoffs and a team that will eventually pursue an NBA championship."

Three of the five "white Americans" who've played in the last 10 NBA All-Star games are former Timberwolves: Tom Gugliotta, Christian Laettner, and Wally Szczerbiak.

Friday, February 24, 2006

More Wolves Updates

Bill Simmons' First Annual Atrocious GM Summit featuring McHale, Isiah Thomas, Rob Babcock and more.

Trade rumors regarding Garnett heading to New York, New Jersey, or Los Angeles during the offseason still persist.

A preview of the Wolves and revamped Nuggets game tonight.

Wolves Updates

So many rumors but not a single trade.
"What we have is what we're going to go with," Casey said.

The only remotely exciting item about the Wolves right now is that Common did a freestyle about KG being MVP during his show at First Ave on Thursday night.

Casey is going to put Jaric back into the rotation.
"He's got his fight back," Casey said. "He's got the spirit back that I liked when he was playing and we were winning early. I thought he lost that."

Griffin has been "practicing well."

T-Hud won't be returning for a few weeks.

Bracey Wright has been averaging 26.3 ppg with the Florida Flame (NBA D-League). Ndudi Ebi, playing for the Fort Worth Flyers, scored a double double in his team's win over the Flame on Thursday night.

Click here for a link to a fictitious and humorous conversation betwen Glen Taylor and McHale.

Target Center on Friday night: The Nuggets vs. The Wolves

Thursday, February 23, 2006

No Trade Announced (Yet)

The trade deadline has come and gone and no announcement has been made. One of the many rumors currently circulating (courtesy of Twolves Central) is that we got an extension til 5pm or 6pm to do some wheeling and dealing with the Bulls.

In the meantime:

Twolves "scout" Rex Chapman is rumored to a candidate for president and general manger of the Phoenix Suns should Bryan Colangelo sign on to a position with the Raptors. Chapman is a former director of basketball operations for the Suns.
Chapman on whether he wants to return to Phoenix:
"Even though Stevie (Nash) and I are the best of friends and I still maintain a home in Phoenix, I'm very happy working with the Timberwolves and (vice president of basketball operations) Kevin McHale and (owner) Glen Taylor," Chapman said in a message.
"They're quality people. We're searching somewhat at the moment, but Kevin Garnett is one of the best players in basketball and we'll get it right.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Real GM- KG To New York?

From Real GM:
A source close to the participants in the talks told me late Tuesday night that New York and Minnesota are in serious and ongoing discussions about a deal which would send Kevin Garnett to the Knicks in exchange for Penny Hardaway and Channing Frye. Isiah Thomas, who has called Frye untouchable all season, is willing to give up the sought after rookie to land the future Hall of Famer.

Garnett has made it clear to the front office that should he be dealt, he wants to go to New York and that wish will be fulfilled if the Timberwolves decide to end the KG era and begin to rebuild. They reportedly respect Garnett and all that he has done for both the franchise and the area and would try to trade him to his preferred team.

The question of if the Wolves want to move on without Garnett will be the deciding factor in whether a trade gets completed before Thursday...

The Claws Go To The Nation's Capital To Watch The Wolves Lose To The Wizards

The Claws visiting the White House before the game.

The Claws enjoying a drink during the game at the MCI Center.

The Claws and the bench watching the Wolves blow a significant lead in the first half.

Final score: Wolves 78, Wizards 90

Monday, February 20, 2006

KG: I'm in it for the long haul.

KG on his loyalty to the team:
"I'm not the one to give up just because something's rough," he said. "That's a coward. That's not even me. I'm in it for the long haul."

Garnett on All-Star weekend:
"It was a lot of fun," Garnett said. "This is probably the best All-Star Game I've been a part of since '97-98. I just enjoyed it more. I've been voted in, you understand. It's just a sense of appreciation for my coaches and my peers."

"I didn't have a lot of stuff I had to be committed to. I got a lot of rest. I was off my feet. I got to spend a lot of time with my family, which is great. And I enjoyed the guys. It was the first time I just sat back and actually enjoyed the guys."

Final Score: West 120, East 122

Blount could replace Madsen in the starting lineup.

T-Hud possibly to start rehab on his ankle this week.
"If we can get him rehabbed, we can have him around," Casey said. "Get him back, get his outside shooting and experience."

Trent Hassell was inducted into the Austin Peay Athletics Hall Of Fame this weekend. The ceremony included a video message from Garnett congratulating his teammate.

There's a rumor that someone wants to do a movie on Hoiberg's possible return (with a pacemaker) to basketball.

The NBA trading deadline is Thursday at 2pm.

The Wolves face the Wizards in DC on Tuesday night.
Mad Dog: "Now we're integrated. We're jelled. There's no more excuses for this group."

Friday, February 17, 2006

Wolves Updates

T-Hud decides against surgery, looks for better options to treat the stiffness in his ankle.

NBA's 50 Greatest Players: The Next 10
TNT is going to announce an unofficial list of 10 players voted on by their staff to be added to league's 50 greatest tomorrow. Garnett is among the 20 finalists.

Click here for an All-Star interview with KG.

More articles surfacing discussing the Wolves' interest in acquiring Steve Francis or Penny Hardaway.

Glen Taylor on the team's recent losing streak:
"I know some of it is the new players and some of the changing. There's a lot of excuses, but I'm just hopeful now that we have this break here that we have some time to figure it out and come out of the break."

KG on Rashad McCants:
"He's definitely into it," Garnett said. "Sometimes, he does look a little bewildered, but I don't think passion is in the back seat, so to speak. He's playing with a lot of heart, but at the same time, he's trying to figure it out."

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Wolves Updates

From The Pioneer Press:
The Marko Jaric saga continues to take strange turns. Jaric, the Wolves' demoted starting point guard, was on the inactive list for the third consecutive game with left knee tendinitis. But Tuesday, the coaching staff put Jaric through a rigorous workout after practice. Why was Jaric doing extra drills in practice if he had a sore knee? Casey said he didn't know.

Garnett on his plans for All-Star weekend:
I don't do much at All-Star. I do some of the things that I have to do, my commitments. Other than that, I've been there, done that with the parties and stuff and enjoying the whole weekend, but now I try to enjoy the family a little more. I don't do too much. Chauncey (Billups) is going to be there; it's good to see him and Flip. I'm off my feet a lot, man. I do my commitments, but for the most part, you'll catch me in my room or chilling somewhere.

Pharrell "captures the essence of Kevin Garnett through music."

Wolves Updates

Courtesy of my friend JJ- a pic of him high fiving KG after Monday night's game.

The Twin Cities' cumulative personal income of $171.4 billion is nearly $25 billion less than is required to adequately support the Timberwolves, Twins, Vikings and Wild franchises, according to a study of 179 U.S. markets by the American City Business Journals.

Dwane Casey on his current emotional state: "I'm good. I'm not ready to jump off a bridge yet."

An excerpt of Jaric's profile from the Eurobasket 2005 site:
When it comes to popularity, Marko Jaric is definitely the biggest star on the team, especially if you ask the ladies.

This Saturday you can watch our 2003 draft picks face off in the NBA D-League as Ndudi Ebi and the Fort Worth Flyers take on Rick Rickert and the Fayetteville Patriots.

KG is facing Paul Pierce in the finals of the YaySports All-Star 1-On-1 Challenge. The winner is determined by number of votes received so click here to cast a ballot for the Ticket.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Wolves 102, Sonics 92 and other news

A collective sigh of relief was audible at the Target Center. Tonight's game against division rivals the Sonics gave us a much needed win before the All-Star break. McHale and the rest of the crowd stuck around til the end of the game and even the players lingered a little longer than usual before heading to the locker room.
Where the hell is Eddie Griffin?

Trade Rumor: Stephon Marbury could end up back in Minnesota in a three-team trade.

T-Hud will decide in the next couple days whether to get surgery on his ankle. Doing so would put an end to his season.
"I need it," he said. "I need surgery."

Attendance at the Target Center is down more than 2000 people per game.

Wolves Updates

Despite three games in four days, the Wolves were pushed a little harder in practice yesterday:
"Our offense is ahead of our defense, so we have to go back to the defensive end," Casey said. "We can't worry about saving our legs. We have to go the extra mile right now to get where we need to be."

Banks came into practice early on Tuesday to review game tapes with Casey.
"This is a great opportunity for me," Banks said. "I'm going to take advantage of every situation. ... The main thing is I can still be taught a lot. That's why I have to do the extra stuff. Whatever I have to do, I'm willing to do."

"When he really, really learns how to play that position, he's going to be deadly," Wolves forward Kevin Garnett said.

After practice, the team headed over to the new NBA City restaurant which is scheduled to open in a few days. According to one of the restaurant trainers, they all "seemed depressed" but Madsen and McHale "were really nice." Apparently, "they all loved the food."

The Wolves are interested in acquiring the Magic's Steve Francis.

Wolves host the Sonics at the Target Center tonight.

Go to YaySports! to vote for KG over T-Mac in the semifinals of the All Star 1-on-1 challenge. It's a pretty close race so far and it would not be fitting if Ticket didn't advance to the finals.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Wolves Updates

Dinner at Chevy's downtown on Sunday left Ricky Davis with a case of food poisoning that caused him to miss yesterday's shootaround in order to get some IV fluids. I get the feeling that the new NBA City restaurant isn't going to be much better.

KG on the recent losing streak:
"I think we're in a position where we have to stop looking down the road, take these games one at a time, focus on getting better. That's all I know."
"I know I sound like a broken record, right?" Garnett said. "Just have to keep grinding."

Chris Bosh on KG:
"He was one of my favorites, back when I was in high school, back when I was really starting to get pretty serious about basketball," Bosh said of Garnett. "I guess you could say I kind of modeled my game after him."

Monday, February 13, 2006

Wolves 94, Raptors 98 (This Is Not A Joke)

Do Raptors fans perpetually feel like this? Do they get that feeling alternating between nausea and the urge to burst into tears game after game? Tonight makes 4 losses in a row, all to teams we should have beaten. The win over the Suns feels like it was a year ago even though it's been only a week. Even Mad Dog seemed bummed after the game.

Click here for a report of the game.

It was kind of creepy how Rex Chapman, sitting next to McHale about 10 rows (actually, it's more like 5 rows) above the bench, would stand during the timeouts, looking over the huddle as if to make sure things were being run properly.

Wolves Updates

Marko Jaric says that it really is tendinitis in his left knee that put him on the inactive list on Saturday night and not issues with his recent lack of playing time.
"No," he said. "It really hurts, and that's the reason."

Yesterday was one of the few practices the team has gotten in since the trade:
"It's a lot of teaching, a lot of bonding from Kevin (Garnett) and the other guys on the team," newcomer Marcus Banks said. "Today was really like the first day of practice. It made it really fun."

The last time the Wolves (22-28) were this many games under .500 was Dec 1996.

Casey says the Wolves can still make the playoffs:
"Our goal is still to win the division, make the playoffs," Casey said. "Nobody is running away with it. We just have to get together, get our offensive and defensive schemes going."

T-Hud goes to Charlotte, NC tonight to have his ankle examined and figure out whether he needs surgery.

Ndudi Ebi made his first appearance with the Fort Worth Flyers on Friday, scoring 8 points and 2 rebounds in 24 minutes in their loss to the Tulsa 66ers.

The Wolves host the Raptors tonight.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Wolves Over The Weekend

Here's a list of excuses used to explain their loss to the Hornets on Saturday night.

Garnett: We never adjusted to Speedy.

Blount: I don't know nobody yet...I'm still learning what everybody likes to do, what position they like the ball, which way they like to go. I just want to get that down, and when the all-star break is over, be ready to roll. There will be 30 games left, and it's time to definitely get it cranked.

Dwane Casey: Now the teams have scouted us...We've got to be able to get to our second option, our third option, whatever, because they know who to help off of, how we're going to play. I think we had a little honeymoon the first few games (after the trade) as far as our offense is concerned. That's what we need is practice days to kind of string together.

I believe that lack of practice time and team bonding are the biggest problems with the Wolves like I believe that Jaric was on the inactive list on Saturday due to tendinitis and not because of his constant bitching. Despite the mess, Glen Taylor/Sid Hartman has said that Casey's job is not on the line.

A few of the many trade rumors currently circulating about the Wolves:

The Knicks might be interested in trading Penny Hardaway and his big contact for Jaric.

The Clippers and Wolves are talking about Chris Wilcox for Eddie Griffin but McHale is hesitant, "fearing that Wilcox might have his own issues, different from those of Griffin."

An NBA team executive believe that the Celtics are holding off on dealing Paul Pierce in case the Wolves decide to trade Garnett.

Manute's Webb compiled a list of the dirtiest players in the NBA and Kandi made the cut:
His head looks like an unattended garden with a serious worm problem. Your appearance can be an expression of one's self, but at least wash your hair once in awhile.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Wolves 80, Jazz 94

The officiating sucked.
Having Jaric and Frahm make their return in the third quarter sucked.
McHale leaving before the game was over and not sticking around to watch the mess he created sucked.
Seeing the tired, depressed look on KG's face that now seems to be a permanent fixture sucked.
Losing to a team that was only 1.5 games ahead of us in the northwest division sucked.

Matt Harpring and Memo Okur didn't suck.

The Wolves will have the chance to redeem themselves tomorrow night as we take on the Hornets who will most likely be without starting point guard and leading contender for rookie of the year, Chris Paul.

We played the Cavs on Wed so why is is this jersey still being sold at the Target Center?

On a more upbeat note, congrats to Ricky Davis and his wife Vanessa on the early morning birth of their son.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Wolves Updates

Jaric could be part of a deal the Wolves are looking to make to get KG some help.

Casey continues to address Marko's lack of playing time:
"I owe it to Marko," Casey said. "I have and will continue to talk to him. Coaches have talked to him, I talked to him a week before he lost the starting job. But I don't want to get into a situation where I have to explain why any individual player didn't play in each game."

McHale confirmed that the Wolves, in the seven-player trade with Boston, also wound up with a $4.2 million trade exception that can be used until the one-year anniversary date (Jan. 26) of the deal.
The exception would enable the Wolves to acquire one or more players on existing contracts for up to that figure. It cannot be used to sign free agents, but the Wolves still will have their standard exceptions -- the midlevel ($5 million) and bi-annual ($1.75 million) -- for that.

T-Hud's going to Charlotte next week for another opinion on his ankle.

KG on his 9th appearance at the All-Star Games:
"All-Star is never old for me," said Garnett, one of seven reserves voted in by the conference coaches. "I take a lot of pride in repping, not only the state but the city, myself, the family, the organization. There's only one person in there with a Minnesota jersey on, that's me. I've got the whole city behind me."

Ricky Davis on what it's like to play with KG: "Beautiful, he's one of the greatest guys in the NBA," Davis said. "It's an added plus to my game. He's a very unselfish player. . . . LeBron's unselfish, too. He gets other guys involved, too. But I only got to play with LeBron [James] for half a year. I really didn't get the full LeBron show."

Target Corp has chosen to keep its name on the Wolves arena for seven more years which means that it won't be called the Garnett Center anytime soon.

Utah's Carlos Boozer plans on making his return this Friday when the Wolves host the Jazz.

KG Selected As All-Star Reserve

As expected, Garnett was chosen as one of the reserves on the Western Conference All-Star team along with Ray Allen, Tony Parker, Dirk Nowitzki, Elton Brand, Pau Gasol, and Shawn Marion. The reserve players were voted on by the NBA head coaches.

“It’s a great honor to be selected to the NBA All-Star Game - every time you’re selected is very special,” said Garnett. “I’m proud to represent my family, the Timberwolves organization and the entire State of Minnesota.”

KG will look awesome in the all-star uniform which is inspired by the exploration of space and the Texas state flag.

More Wolves News

Dwane Casey on whether KG will finish his career in Minnesota: "If I were a betting man," Casey said, "I would say yeah."

T-Hud is still having problems with his ankle and is not playing anytime soon.

As of yesterday, Hoiberg still doesn't know if he's going to return this season.

From the Pioneer Press:
Here's Timberwolves forward Kevin Garnett and Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James

On how many Valentine's Day marriage proposals each has received over the years:
Garnett: "I got quite a few. Both male and female. Everybody likes something."
James: "Thousands. … I've never received one from a man."

On which celebrity each would like to trade places with for a day:
Garnett: "It wouldn't be no celebrity, I'll tell you that. It's kind of good to go someplace and enjoy the place you're at."
James: "I'm not sure. I'm comfortable with being LeBron James right now."

On whose performance was better — Garnett's in adidas commercials or James' in Nike ads:
Garnett: "I didn't have a chance to dance. He got to dance in his. I didn't have a chance to show off my dancing skills. I'm pretty nice when it comes to the moves."
James: "Of course, Nike. He did a great job, though. I think both of them came out pretty great."

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Wolves Updates

Dwane Casey on Marcus Banks:
Well, one thing, there is an old saying in sports: One man's junk is another man's treasure...Sometimes guys are entrenched; it's the rotations on another team, the coach's relationship with the players. I just think that Marcus Banks just got out of favor with the Celtics.

According to sources from the the NBA, L.A. Clippers are offering Chris Wilcox for Eddie Griffin but the Wolves aren't saying yes.

Bill Simmons ranks the NBA teams on chances of winning the title. The Wolves are at #17:
I'm prepared for anything from these guys: A 12-game winning streak, a 20-game losing streak, KG punching out Mark Blount during a timeout, Marcus Banks putting up nine straight triple-doubles, Mark Madsen coming out for a home game dressed like Janet Reno, you name it. Crazy team.
(And did you notice that the Wolves have already given up on Marko Jaric? In case you forgot, I called this
back in August after they made the Cassell trade. And no, I'm not telling you that to toot my own horn: Dig through my archives and you'll find hundreds of dumb predictions over the years. But after watching Jaric play 30-35 times in person, I knew his game well enough to state the anti-Jaric case about as emphatically as I could. I knew I was right. Which raises the question: How could the Timberwolves not know? Didn't they have scouts? And how could they underestimate Sam I Am in a contract year that badly? One of the dumbest trades of the decade.)

Wolves 91, Cavaliers 97

From Star Tribune:
Garnett on James' effect on the game: "I hope the city of Cleveland totally understands what they get to see night in and night out. It's like the Beatles right now, y'know?"
James on Garnett: "He comes back better and better, year in and year out. He brings his "A" game every night."

What I learned at the game tonight:
1) The Wolves have no problem blowing a significant lead.
2) If your name is Lebron James and there's 25 seconds left in the game you're allowed to tuck the ball under your arm, run to the basket, and make a layup without getting called.

While Lebron said he and former teammate Ricky Davis harbored no hard feelings towards each other, it's becoming increasingly clear that Davis and KG are getting along awesomely. The camaraderie on the court (especially after the Phoenix game) is something that didn't exist before the trade.

For the second game in a row, ex-starter Marko Jaric graced just the bench with his presence. "Definitely, I don't see it as a compliment," Jaric said, demonstrating his firm grasp of the obvious. He did get to take part in an ESPN Magazine fashion-type photo shoot today.

Tonight was the first of a five consecutive homes game for the team who are currently third place in the northwest division at 4 games under .500. For more info on yet another heartbreaker, check out the Star Tribune.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Wolves Updates

Mad Dog on last night's game and how KG forgot to drink his protein shakes because he was so wound up. Here are some of the tunes Madsen was listening to on the plane ride home:
Time After Time- Cyndi Lauper
We Built This City – Starship
Dream Big– Ryan Shupe and the Rubberband
More Than a Feeling – Boston

ESPN Daily Dime on who should be on the All-Star team:
I think Kevin Garnett should stay home for the first time in this millenium. Nothing against KG -- his numbers are solid. But I expect more from Garnett. Among the game's elite players, he's probably the only guy who hasn't scored 35 in a game this year. His team is just 22-25, and out of the playoffs right now. That's not good enough.

From Pioneer Press:
Here is Timberwolves center Eddie Griffin …

On his most memorable moment: "Having my daughter, who's 2 now. She's my first child. I was there in the room. There's nothing like it."

On his most embarrassing moment: "Shooting an air ball at the free-throw line. I don't remember what game it was, but I did it here with the Wolves. I forget who we were playing. I've tried to repress that memory."

KG Block Party Rocks Phoenix Last Night

Wolves 103, Suns 101 (in Phoenix)

Thank god for the extra practice on Sunday. If not, the Wolves could have possibly lost every game on their road trip for the first time in a long, long time.

I can't believe that KG's last second block of Shawn Marion's jumper only made it to #2 in NBA TV's top 10 plays of the night. I was so pissed I can't even remember what number 1 was.

"As soon as it left his hand, I got it," said Garnett, brushing aside the notion that it was a close play. "I'm sitting here in front of ya'll with a win." They're still trying to calm down Coach D'Antoni and Phoenix fans who thought it was goaltending. Despite what YaySports says, that block was perfectly legal.

Coach Casey made good on his word/threat and started AC and Mad Dog in place of Griffin and Jaric who sat on the bench the entire game.
"It added a little bit different energy," veteran Trenton Hassell said of the lineup switch. "We were just on. I think a lot of guys shot it with confidence."

"This is a coach's decision, and there's nothing I can do about that," Jaric said of his demotion. He had started the first 46 games this season. "If they think that's going to help this team, then that's probably the thing we're supposed to do. I'm going to be working hard in case they call my name."

T-Hud was not at the game last night because of ankle problems that have been plaguing him for weeks. No time has been set for his return.

Casey says that Tskitishvili will have more success with the Suns than he did the Wolves:
"Steve Nash will make his job easier, just like he did for Boris Diaw," Casey said. "Skita is athletic and can run the floor. All he's got to do is catch and lay it in."

Casey has talked to rookie McCants about acting more "professional" (i.e., not trash talking or acting too chummy with opponents) during games. Still he says, "he's much, much better than he was. His approach, his work habits."

Fred Hoiberg received "positive feedback" from a doctor on Monday regarding a possible return to the league but still hasn't made up his mind. Hoiberg will have another CT scan this Friday at the Mayo Clinic as well as meet with a pacemaker specialist. In the meantime, his agent has been trying to see if there's any interest from various teams for Hoiberg.

The next game is this Wednesday at the Target Center against King James and the Cavaliers.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Wolves Over The Weekend

One of the Twolves to a coach after the defeat by the Pistons: This place is a disaster.

"I keep telling y'all, man, this team doesn't have the chemistry," Garnett said firmly. "It doesn't have the camaraderie, nor the identity. We're still soul-searching for ourselves. We have a brand-new team. However you want to put it, this is a brand-new, squeaky-clean new team."

That statement was made after the loss in Portland Friday night during which Garnett set a Timberwolves record for best shooting percentage in a single game at 92.3%. Whether or not it's the chemistry or just the players, the Wolves were slaughtered the next night by Golden State, a team with whom we now share a record of 21 wins and 25 losses. Even if the Suns get super wasted watching the Super Bowl things don't bode well for us in Phoenix tomorrow. At least we're leading the league with the number of players sporting headbands.

"We all definitely feel pressure," Jaric said. "That's part of this game." That's one dude who hasn't shown much reason to keep him in the starting lineup. According to the Denver Post, the Wolves are open to trading for Jaric but would rather deal AC and T-Hud.

Richie Frahm is now the team's players union representative. He's been out for the last month with tendinitis/foot problems but apparently is now recovered and looking to get in some practice time before playing again.

Glen Taylor spent some more time defending McHale:
"I don't think anybody's as good as they think they are," Taylor said, "and I also think they are not as bad as some people think they are. I back up Kevin, and I ask him to take risks. I ask him to do things that aren't exactly popular."

Ndudi Ebi is playing in the NBA D-League! The Fort Worth Flyers have acquired our 2003 first round draft pick.

Isaiah "J.R." Rider, our 1993 first round draft pick, pleaded not guilty on Friday to charges of kidnapping and false imprisonment of an ex-girlfriend. Rider said that both he and the ex have versions of the events that differ from that of the prosecutors.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Wolves Updates

Dwane Casey on KG not being an All-Star game starter:
"I'm disappointed," Casey said. "Kevin's meant so much to the game and (been) so important to the league, not only just basketball, but the community and what he stands for. I'm disappointed the fans didn't see it that way. There's no way the coaches can keep him out. It would be a travesty if he's not on the all-star team."

Even though there's got to be some jealousy and other mixed (but mostly negative) feelings as the new players eat up playing time for the other Twolves, Mad Dog always finds a way to put a good spin on it:
"We have a guy who watches out for the locker room. Kevin Garnett makes sure that everyone feels integrated, on and off the court," Madsen said. "Troy Hudson has no ego. Anthony Carter has no ego. That goes 1 through 13 [on the roster]. If you notice, those are two of the guys who are up giving high-fives in timeouts. There is a sense of harmony on this team, no matter who's playing."

Nikoloz Tskitishvili is happy to be in Phoenix. He asked McHale and Jim Stack to let him go to a team that wants him and says he got his wish. Coach D'Antoni thinks "there's some potential" in Skita which better be the case if the dude was drafted before Amare Stoudemire.

Courtesy of True Hoop, a video clip of J.R. Rider winning the 1994 Dunk Competition. Charles Barkley called the dunk "awesome."

Click here for a preview of tonight's game in Portland.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

NBA All-Star Game Results

While Garnett was 10th overall in terms of votes received, he was 3rd among western conference forwards and hence will not be a starter in the 55th NBA All-Star game on Feb 19. There are 7 reserve spots on each team that will be voted on by the coaches and there's a good chance KG will fill one of those.
For a list of starters and voting results, go to NBA.com.

A Boy Named "World" Saves Boston

Check out this piece in Real GM's Locker Talk section about the trade. Here's a snippet:

The Minnesota Timberwolves struggles this season appear to run only skin deep. Reliable sources from within the Wolves locker room are reporting that there is a significant amount of bitterness and jealousy being directed towards Wally Szczerbiak by his teammates, mainly because of his chiseled good looks and striking features...

Wally’s talent and intensity are undeniably great. Maybe catching brief glimpses of himself in the shiny court, or seeing his superb reflection off the glass of the backboard motivates him out there? One can only assume. When confronted with these glamorous accusations in a recent press conference, Szczerbiak simply flashed that winning smile, shrugged his broad shoulders and said, “C’mon, have you seen me?”

Wolves Updates

Steelers Ben Roethlisberger and Jerome Bettis, both sporting a Billups jersey, and Hines Ward sat courside during the Wolves loss in Detroit last night.

KG says his relationship with Szczerbiak did not contribute to the trade with the Celtics.
Garnett: I have a lot of love for him. I think people took our mishaps and wanted it to be more than what it was. It wasn't that.

Ricky Davis is going to continue paying for the seats of the Get Buckets Brigade at Celtics games though he's no longer in Boston and the members are now focusing on Kendrick Perkins.

From The Pioneer Press:
Casey, the Timberwolves' coach, has been lobbying NBA vice president Stu Jackson and director of officials Ronnie Nunn for Wolves forward Kevin Garnett to get more foul calls from officials.

"We've got a postal bill that's pretty high," Casey said Wednesday.

Garnett shot just three free throws Wednesday night in a 90-74 loss to Detroit. He averaged 10 free throws in the four games befor that, compared with his season average of 6.4 trips to the line. Casey pinpointed two factors that helped Garnett get to the line more: his aggressiveness and the influence of last week's trade with Boston.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Pistons Break Their One Game Losing Streak

Twolves lost to the Pistons in Detroit, 90-74.
I made the very unfortunate choice to see the movie "Annapolis" (none of which is shot in Annapolis) instead of watching the game so click here for coverage.

Kandi "treats the girls nice"

From C.J./Star Tribune:
We'll miss the contributions of beautiful Wally Szczerbiak in a Wolves uni but not Michael Olowokandi. My only regret about Olowokandi's departure is that he got away before I could ask him about some limo driver gossip.

Word has it that this month Candyman and his crew were bar-hopping in the warehouse district when their limo driver got cuffed and arrested. Candyman & Co. ended up taking a cab home that night.

When I asked my source whether all this bar-hopping was appropriate for the married man Olowokandi is rumored to be, I was told, "You can't write that." Olowokandi's NOT married? "I can't deny or confirm it. He treats the girls nice, so they don't need to know that," said the barfly. Men. Rather, boys.

Wolves Updates

The $1,000,000 NBA All-Star One-on-One Challenge from YaySports. Who'd win if KG and Kobe went head to head?

Dwane Casey says because of the surplus of point guards on the team they're going to have to "play their way in."

The Pioneer Press says that there's still a possibility of getting Sonics guard Flip Murray in a three way trade.

Fred Hoiberg is going back for another medical opinion, will make his decision on whether or not to play again in a week or two.

Ricky Davis on their game in Detroit tonight: We can go with them, athletic-wise. I feel we can break 'em down a little, play them the way you have to be able to play them.

From The Boston Herald:
Paul Pierce on the trade: I think Ricky (Davis) and Mark (Blount) are the guys they really wanted, and I think they’re going to do really well for them.

Pierce on Marcus Banks: He needs the minutes to get comfortable with the system and the coach, and Marcus never really got that with us. He never was really comfortable in Doc (Rivers’) system the whole time, but I think he has the ability to be a good player in this league. He’s a lock-down defender and he has a nice touch from the outside. I put him in the same mode as a (Warriors guard) Derek Fisher.

The Boston Herald also had another piece on McHale's take on the the new players.