The Wolves are coming off a surprising win over the Blazers Wednesday night and continue their home stand with a game against the Oklahoma City Thunder tonight at Target Center.
The Thunder, who were 3-12 at one point this season in the absence of their two super stars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, have improved to 9-13 and have won four straight as those guys work their way back into the lineup. On the one hand, it might have been nice to get a shot at the Thunder while they were undermanned; on the other it's good to have stars healthy and more entertaining to watch a Thunder team with all of their great players.
The Thunder are on the 2nd night of a back to back, as they won in Cleveland last night against a Cavs team that was resting LeBron James with knee soreness. It was their fourth straight win and 6th of their last 7, and while the competition has not been the strongest, it's clear the Thunder have things moving in the right direction again.
It will be another interesting match up for Andrew Wiggins, who gets to face off against scoring champ and reigning MVP Durant for the first time. Whatever else, it's certainly true that Wiggins is getting a lot of experience trying to guard some pretty freaking good ball players in his rookie season.
Mo Williams remains listed as doubtful for tonight's tilt. Which is too bad; regardless of what you think of Zach LaVine, it's not a good thing for him to be out there without a net for 40 minutes a night. And a brutal match up for him as well against the strong and hyper-aggressive Westbrook.
In other news...
Jerry Zgoda seems to think that Nemanja Bjelica, who the Wolves drafted a few years ago, wants to come to the NBA next year:
Bjelica is a NBA stretch 4 who's signed on w/ agent Arn Tellem, a sign he's aimed at NBA next season or worst-case season thereafter— Jerry Zgoda (@JerryZgoda) December 12, 2014
He's been playing for Fenerbache in Turkey this season and doing well, averaging 12 and 6 in 26 minutes a game in Euroleague contests after his strong summer at the World Cup with the Serbian national team.
He's sort of a stretch four, though his 3 point shooting comes and goes (not a problem since the Wolves don't actually shoot threes), and has a pretty wide variety of skills--he's a good ball handler and passer for a guy his size. He'll be 27 years old next season, so it's now or never.
I don't think he'll be much of a needle mover, but I'd rather have him out there as a back up forward than Anthony Bennett.
It wouldn't surprise me to see him in a trade at some point before next season either, especially if the Wolves need a sweetener to move someone else or complete a deal.
That's about all I got.
Today in History
1474: Isabella crowns herself queen of Castille and Aragon
1791: Bank of U.S. opens
1792: Beethoven has first composition lesson with Franz Joseph Haydn
1800: Washington DC established as U.S. Capital
1870: Joseph Rainey of South Carolina sworn in as first black U.S. Representative
1878: Joseph Pulitzer begins publishing St. Louis Dispatch
1901: Guglielmo Marconi sends first trans-atlantic radio signal
1917: Edward Flanagan founds Boys Town outside Omaha
1963: Kenya declares independence from UK
2000: Supreme Court releases decision in Bush v. Gore
Today's musical birthday is Frank Sinatra, born in 1915 (d. 1998)
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We'll be back with more later.
Enjoy your Friday.