That's now 21 straight losses in April dating back to 2009, and before I continue I want everyone to please lower their expectations for this report card. When I signed up over a month ago for this on March 4th, the Wolves were 19-19 coming off a road victory against the Blazers; Love scored 42 points and Ricky had 10 assists in the first quarter. It was our first win in Portland since December 7, 2005. Of course, being a Minnesota sports team horrible things started to happen and continued to pile on. This is the second loss to the Hornets since Ricky's injury and the last time Wolves won in April, the starting lineup included Kevin Ollie, Mike Miller, Ryan Gomes, Brian Cardinal, and Kevin Love. Even (the late) Whitney Houston's ex-husband contributed 10 points in the victory. Anyways, here are my grades.
Kevin Love: 35 minutes, 11-23 fg, 3-8 3pt, 4-5 ft, -11 --- 29 pts 12 rebs 3 asts 1 stl 1 blk 0 tov
47 double doubles now for Love, offensively he was above average. Early in the game he hit 3 but grabbed a few offensive boards and scored most of his points in the paint. He then sat out for a good chunk of the 2nd quarter, then made a couple more 3's (missed some too) and got to the line a couple times in the 2nd half. Love scored in spurts and it seemed like a typical Kevin Love game from last season. Defensively he was bad, not as horrible as the box score would suggest since Jason Smith and Chris Elliot combined for 47 points on 21-26 shooting while making jumpers look like layups, but the numbers speak for themselves.
J.J. Barea: 34 minutes, 4-12 fg, 2-4 3pt, -14 --- 10 pts 1 reb 7 asts 3 tov
Mediocre game for JJ, hit a couple 3's that kept the Wolves in the game, had some nice passes but missed some gimmes and committed a couple bad turnovers. He also was involved in a lot of offensive foul calls tonight. He got a taste of his own medicine late in the 3rd quarter when Greivis Vasquez drew a charge against him off an inbound pass, but I think at least 2 Hornets got Barea'd tonight.
Michael Beasley: 30 minutes, 7-11 fg, 3-4 3pt, 3-4 ft, -13 --- 20 pts 7 rebs 1 ast 1 stl 1 blk 3 tov
Beas played a solid game, made key shots that prevented the Hornets from blowing the game open. Also rebounded well and wasn't hopeless on the defensive end. He did commit one frustrating turnover that led to a fast break. But if Beasley is somehow a Timberwolf next season in a 6th man role I would be okay with it. I just love watching him play when he's a in a groove shooting the ball, too bad it doesn't happen on a consistent basis.
Wayne Ellington: 27 minutes, 1-9 fg, 0-3 3pt, 2-2 ft, -5 --- 4 pts 1 reb 1 stl 1 blk
Couldn't hit a jumper or anything really. The Wayne Ellington roller-coaster hit rock bottom. Don't know how he ended up playing 27 minutes.
Nikola Pekovic: 26 minutes, 4-9 fg, 3-3 ft, -4 --- 11 pts 6 rebs 1 blk
It was an okay game for PEEEEEEEEEKKKKKKK. I know he's still not 100%. Earlier on he got a couple shots blocked by Kaman but also didn't get many calls the entire game, very frustrating. With Pek the Wolves were able to dominate the paint in the early going but didn't get him many touches in the 2nd half aside from a 3 point play in the 3rd quarter. Defensively it was far from Pek's best as Kaman had a great game. Stay healthy and next season Pek will average 18-10.
Martell Webster: 21 minutes, 1-5 fg, 1-3 3pt, 2-4 ft, -4 --- 5 pts 2 rebs 2 asts 2 stls 1 blk 1 tov
Other than a few good defensive plays and a 3 pointer, Webster was non-existent. Also got out smarted and out hustled by Jason Smith.
Wesley "I banged a Wolves cheerleader"Johnson: 18 minutes, 0-2 fg, 0-1 3pt, +4 --- 0 pts 0 rebs 2 asts 0 stls 0 blks 1 tov
Derrick Williams: 15 minutes, 2-5 fg, 0-1 3pt, -11 --- 4 pts 1 reb 1 stl 1 blk
When Caged Cub drove to the basket he scored, when he settled for a jumpshot he missed.
Malcolm Lee: 14 minutes, 1-1 fg, +5 --- 2 pts 4 asts
Decent showing for Lee, nice drive for his only basket and did well distributing the ball. Didn't play enough to garner a higher grade from me.
Anthony Randolph: 13 minutes, 1-1 fg, +2 --- 2 pts 2 rebs 1 ast 1 blk 2 tov
Typical game for Sad Dog. The Good: Nice move for a dunk from Lee, took a charge from Xavier Henry. The Bad: two bad turnovers and aside from the charge nothing on D.
Anthony Tolliver: 7 minutes, 1-3 fg, 1-1 3pt, +6 --- 3 pts 1 reb 1 tov
Hit a trey and committed a bad turnover. All 7 minutes were played in the 4th quarter.
I hope the Timberwolves somehow get to 30 wins, 30-36 would look nice after what happened in the past month. I think everyone knows this is a big summer for the Wolves. Ricky please heal quickly so I can watch THIS type of basketball again. Also, what an amazing dunk.
Lastly a shameless plug for my YouTube channel: chubbyjenks
Good night everyone and best of luck to all. I wish to meet some of you fellow CH'ers sooner than later. When's our next Canis Hoopus pick up game gonna be? Alright I'm done blabbering, commence chat, s’il vous plaît.