The Minnesota Timberwolves are coming into this season with a whole new look. Losing their best player and leader Kevin Love is an enormous blow to this team, but the good news is, they’ve got a lot of young talent. In return for Love, the Wolves acquired Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett— the number one picks from the previous two NBA drafts. Bennett has worked hard over the offseason to put his mediocre rookie season behind him and should have an improved sophomore campaign. Wiggins, the former Kansas Jayhawk stud, is looking to live up to all the expectations. Coming out of high school, Wiggins was the clear cut best player in the country. Drafting Zach LaVine also adds crazy athleticism to the team. This Timberwolves may not be the most experienced, however, in a few years this team can be a force to be reckoned with.
- KEY ADDITIONS: Andrew Wiggins (SG), Zach LaVine (PG), Anthony Bennett (PF) Thaddeus Young (SF), Glenn Robinson III (SG)
- KEY LOSSES: Kevin Love (PF)
My Starting Five
The Wolves definitely have a lot of upside despite low expectations. Players like Andrew Wiggins, Zach LaVine, and Ricky Rubio have the ability to lead this team. Rubio is a Timberwolves veteran and knows what to expect. He is a great passer and game manager. Andrew Wiggins showed at the end of his college career that he can take over a game when needed, and his potential is through the roof. Wiggins was the clear cut number one pick and should be a great player for the Wolves down the road.
Zach LaVine is an interesting story. He did not start at UCLA the one season he played for the team, however, he has shown that he can be a very good NBA player. His athleticism shows he has the ability to jump out of the gym and drive to the basket at will.
The guard play of this team is the strong point, however, the big men are no slouches. Nikola Pekovic is a huge body down low and might be one of the strongest players in the league. He provides much needed rebounding and post moves down low for the T-Wolves. Thaddeus Young can extend his game from the post to mid-range and be comfortable doing it. When all of these players are put together on the court, success has to follow. Whether it is this year or in three years, this Wolves’ team will be successful.
When looking at all the key additions to this team compared to the key losses, one would think that it’s a positive. Well one would be wrong, as the key loss to this team is obviously All-Star forward Kevin Love. Losing Kevin Love means that the Wolves are losing 26 points and 13 rebounds per game. Finding out where these points and rebounds are going to come from is going to be difficult, especially with all the young players on the roster. Not only does losing Love mean an unbelievable loss in player stats, it also means losing leadership. Love was openly criticized by Rubio about his leadership abilities, however, Love is a top-10 player in the NBA and would have been a great leader for all the up and coming rookies on the roster.
While the young age of this squad may be a huge positive down the road, it may not prove highly beneficial this season. Being a rookie usually entails inexperience, and its quite difficult for a player to make the jump from college to the NBA and be successful right away. It may happen to a few select players, but it will not happen to all the young players in Minnesota. The Timberwolves have the potential to be a winning team in a few years, unfortunately, its not looking good for them this upcoming season.