Welcome to the NBA 2011-12 Twolves! Now go play, arguably the best team in the Western Conference. I understand there's a lot of talent in the West, really with the CP3 trade, but OKC really poses a big threat in the conference, and specifically in the division.
Last nights Thunder game showed why this team is so dangerous and it wasn't even, by any means, a very polished performance. Bottom line with the Thunder is that they have the greatest scoring tandem in the league in Westbrook and Durant. Both of them have size, quickness, strength and athleticism that are just about unmatched at their position, at least in the conference (I think Lebron beats Durant and Rose beats Westbrook). There is really no denying that they are, barring injuries, going to be difficult, if not impossible, to shut down for many years to come. The other things Durant and Westbrook have going for them is chemistry and sheer effort. Their team hasn't changed from last year, and they are some of the hardest workers with some of the highest motors.
All things said, this is a tough matchup for any team.
Looking at this year's Twolves, at least I can say no team will be able to get away with trying to look past us to another game.
Anyways, getting to the match up & what I hope to see
To get it out of the way, I would love to see a victory (of course, right? Who wouldn't want to see their home town team come a way with a win against a conference contender. That should go with out being said, right? RIGHT). I say this because I think the following things are more specific things that I want to see that might just help them come away with a big, huge, stinkin', look-out-league-we-for-real, W.
I want to see Team Defense. I have been incredibly pleased with how the team has rotated defensively in the two preseason games. Of course, I'm interested to see what this can do against a team like OKC. It will be essential in order to slow down KD.
I want to see Adelman (yuck, almost type Rambis), use the bench depth that we have. I also want to see the Wolves give a lot of different bodies the responsibility of guarding KD and RusWest, just to see if anyone can be successful. Using our bench also needs to be in an attempt to create mismatches on the offensive end. Rubio and Barea were very fun to watch. I can't see that being extremely defensively successful against RusWes, "The Beard" James Harden, or Thabo Sefalosha, but they will constantly create problems on the offensive side of the ball. I also want to see love at Center, with a small line up and see if we can CORRE CORRE CORRE (for non-spanish speakers, run in the imperative) our way to some easy baskets. Using the bench is also important because of the shortened season. I would like to see the Box score look like it was from the euro league, nobody much over 30 mins, certainly nobody but Kevin Love (I understand this might be kind of silly, but why not keep legs young?).
I want to see Wolves draw fouls. Specifically I want to see Michael Beasley draw fouls. It seems like he tries, but he just looks so out of control the refs don't give him the benefit of the doubt like they have learned to do with guys like Carmelo Anthony. I have no reason to believe that Beasley couldn't make this happen, and if he does we have an all pro scorer just like Melo. This is also important because chances are the wolves will have to do their share of hacking on the defensive end to stop easy buckets. We need to do our best to balance the scales at the charity stripe.
I want to see Anthony Randolph play with in the ever-lovin' offense. I mean if I see him playing out of control one time, Adelman (damn it, almost typed Rambis again! YUCK!) needs to pull him off the floor by his ear and tell him to "try again next game, sonny boy". I would so much like to see him shine in the limited amount of time he's on the court so we either can ship him off somewhere in a package for a capable ball handling SG (mayo?) or see if he can lock up a place in the bright future of the pack (Wolf pack, not Packers, HA! Randolph would die if he played football).
Ball movement! Ricky, just do your think man. Ridnour, Beasley, Randolph please think before you jack up long jump shots or recklessly drive to the rim. Barea, all I gotta say is: "¡Coqui! do your thing too, make Puerto Rico proud of you and the rest of the Wolves." MORE ASSIST THAN TURN OVERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I think that's all I got. So excited to watch this game. Lets go Wolves!