Wolves vs. Raptors
6:30 pm CDT
Happy Canadian Thanksgiving!
After starting their preseason with back-to-back losses, the Timberwolves will hope to grab a win in Preseason Game 3. The game will take place at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto as part of the Canadian series.
Second-year forward Andrew Wiggins is returning to his home town for the match up, and the Star Tribune's Jerry Zgoda reported today that Wiggins' family is working on getting 15 courtside tickets. The next time Minnesota will play on the road in Toronta will be Feb. 24. Over the first two games, Wiggins averaged eight points while shooting just 26.8 percent from the floor; hopefully for Wolves fans, his family will see a better performance tonight.
Fans will also get a look at former Wolves forward Anthony Bennett in his new uniform. Also born in Toronto, Bennett is now playing for his hometown team after leaving the Timberwolves roster a few weeks ago. Despite being the 2013 NBA Draft No. 1 overall pick, Bennett has yet to fulfill expectations at the pro level. Bennett wasn't getting many minutes in Minnesota, whose roster boasts a lot of depth at the power forward/center. The change of scenery may prove beneficial for Bennett, who said the following:
"I felt way more comfortable here [in Toronto], with my family and friends and great guys over here."
Heading into tonight's game, Minnesota needs to find a spark in the first quarter that we haven't yet seen this preseason. Despite strong performances from rookies Karl-Anthony Towns, Tyus Jones and Nmanja Bjelica, the overall team play can certainly be defined as lackluster, at least in the first half.
Forward Shabazz Muhammad had a rough game against OKC but looked much better against the Bulls Saturday, so hopefully he can continue that trend tonight. Andre Miller will also be suiting up for the Wolves after being away from the team this weekend for an unspecified reason.
Across the board, the Timberwolves need to play better defense if they hope to start winning games. The team's struggles on that end of the floor are not new, but hopefully interim head coach Sam Mitchell will find a way for his players to step it up defensively.
After tonight, the Wolves will have four games remaining in the preseason before their regular-season opener on Oct. 28.
Raptors: James Johnson (Achilles) and Ross (ankle) are questionable. Landry Fields (hip) is out.
Wolves: Nikola Pekovic (Achilles) and Ricky Rubio (quad) are out.