Wolves host Clippers tonight, Rambis says Flynn "a ways away" from returning, Beasley feels at home, and more
Previews of tonight's game against the Clippers:
Jonny Flynn will not make his debut Wednesday against the Clippers. Coach Rambis said he was still "a ways away." Flynn was scheduled to meet with the medical staff today to get a better idea of when his return might come.
Much of the credit for that improved play, in Wolves coach Kurt Rambis' opinion, was because of Telfair, who got the Wolves offense into the correct pace. But Telfair's availability for the Clippers game is in question. He has been bothered by heel pain caused by plantar fasciitis. And while Telfair has played through the pain, Rambis said it was very difficult for the point guard against Charlotte on Sunday, one reason Sundiata Gaines played more than 17 minutes.
Telfair missed most of practice Tuesday and has been occasionally wearing a protective boot. His status will be re-evaluated Wednesday morning.
But it looks as if Ridnour will be seeing extensive minutes with a team that has grown a bit during his absence.
Minnesota will need the depth in the backcourt until Jonny Flynn is prepared to step on the court for the first time this season. Head coach Kurt Rambis said the team will continue to evaluate Flynn throughout the rehab process and not rush the second-year point guard into duty.
In related injury news, Wayne Ellington was also back at practice and he also hopes to make a contribution on Wednesday night against the Clippers. Ellington has missed the previous five games with a bruised thigh.
Even with the apparent return of point guard Luke Ridnour from a hamstring injury, Timberwolves coach Kurt Rambis is not ready to speed up the pace of his triangle offense.
The Wolves are 2-2 since Rambis told his point guards to be more deliberate in running the offense, a major shift from the initial plan this season of being an up-tempo team.
"We have to learn how to run," Rambis said. "We were playing too fast for the experience we have on this team. We were making too many mistakes. Guys were spending too much time to create stuff, and it was getting us too many turnovers."
Rambis likes the results of the new approach, which had the Wolves (3-9) in position to win Monday's game at Charlotte. A subtle achievement in the disappointing loss was the Wolves' season-low 10 turnovers.
Based on the current chemistry being developed in the locker room, Milicic is optimistic about Minnesota's future and to start he's very high on the talents of Beasley telling HOOPSWORLD that "he's a great player. A real talented young guy," set to lead the club into the future.
Milicic also was quick to point out that it goes beyond natural talent on the court. Great teams are able develop tightness long after the lights at the gym are shutdown for the night.
"In Detroit we had veterans, older guys on the team but they also had a lot of fun and I had a lot of fun being around them," stated Milicic. "I enjoy this team. We have a lot of good guys, we need to work hard, play hard and learn how to win. I think I can say we're better than last year. We'll see when the season ends how good we really are. We're still a young team and have plenty of new guys, so we're trying to get to know each other on and off the court."
From Britt Robson/SI.com: NBA POWER RANKINGS
#25 Minnesota Timberwolves (3-9)
The mutual breakouts of forwards Kevin Love and Michael Beasley probably shortens the revolving-door rotation that had Minnesota's top nine players bunched between 29.1 minutes (for Beasley) and 19 minutes (Anthony Tolliver) per game before Love's 31-31 performance against the Knicks. Assuming Beasley and Love get a boost in minutes, does coach Kurt Rambis go smaller on the front line and reduce Darko Milicic's playing time, or pinch minutes from his swingmen, which will be harder to do when Martell Webster is fully recovered from back surgery later this year? Meanwhile, with point guard Jonny Flynn expected back from his hip injury later this month, how does Rambis apportion minutes among Flynn, Luke Ridnour and Sebastian Telfair? Rambis has praised Telfair for his steady play this season.
From Judd Spicer/City Pages: Kevin Love: Call him "Mr. Glass"
Beasley’s scoring binge has helped the Wolves go 2-2, showing a feistiness that wasn’t there early in the season—or for the last five years, really.
Beasley welcomed a baby boy into his family on the same day he hung 42 on the Kings and is quickly settling into his new surroundings after two so-so seasons to start his career.
"I feel at home," Beasley said. "I definitely feel at home, on the court and off."