Wolves Enter Offseason
As Timberwolves fans, we're getting pretty accustomed to the playoffs moving ahead without Minnesota slated into the schedule. I find myself re-remembering every year how long the season actually is, because I'm used to ours ending in April.
We're all hoping that trend stops sooner rather than later, and as I stated in last week's Friday Frenzy column, there were a lot of silver linings to the Wolves' 16-66 cloud. At this point, I'm glad to see the players able to refresh and (hopefully) be back to full health by the fall. Here are a couple glimpses of the team's offseasons thus far:
Andrew Wiggins is back in his hometown of Toronto, as a few posts on Instagram revealed for fans. The rookie is even hosting a "Fight Night" for the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao fight on May 2.
- Chase Budinger is (once again) quite unsatisfied with his air travel experiences and taking to Twitter to air it out:
- Zach LaVine headed out west to Seattle.
- Ricky Rubio is recovering from ankle surgery (and posting a lot more on Twitter).
- And of course, Lorenzo Brown continues to be the class-act, fun-loving guy we all know and love:
Huge shoutout and thank you to all the @MNTimberwolves fans that showed love and supported us throughout the season! Love this city!— Lorenzo Brown (@Zo_Brown) April 16, 2015
Other Basketball News
Kawhi Leonard Named Defensive Player of the Year. On Thursday, the NBA identified Leonard as the top defensive player in the league for the 2014-2015 season. Leonard became just the sixth forward to lead the NBA in steals per game since they started tracking the stat 42 years ago. He averaged career highs of 2.31 steals and 5.9 defensive rebounds per game. The last Spurs player to win the award was David Robinson, who won in 1992.
Adam Silver Addresses Intentional Fouls. In a Thursday report on NBA.com, AP's Brian Mahoney reported that the NBA Commissioner is "on the fence" regarding intentional fouling away from the ball in games. Silver acknowledged both sides of the argument: (1) strategy of the game vs. (2) entertainment factor, and he made this statement:
"I've sat in meetings with some of the greatest players like Michael Jordan, Larry Bird who said that players should learn to make their free throws and it's part of the game. At the same time, it doesn't make for great television, so I'm on the fence right now."
It will be interesting to see how the issue plays out, as Silver said he expects the league to be "very engaged" in the topic during the offseason.
Two Playoff Games Friday Night. Houston will try to extend its series lead to 3-0 tonight in Dallas. The Rockets are off to a great start so far, and a road win would definitely put the Mavericks in trouble. Meanwhile, the Clippers/Spurs matchup is turning out to be one of the better series thus far, and San Antonio will look to use home-court advantage to bump the current 1-1 record in its favor.
Friday Flick Recommendation
Okay, this is the second week in a row that I'm going to suggest a movie that's both a sports film and based on a true story ... (what can I say, I'm a sucker for those two together) ...
Because I just re-watched this one Monday night, it's fresh in my mind and it feels wrong to not recommend it at this point. The story of Rudy Ruettiger and his journey to play football for Notre Dame is one that gets me every time.
I know I'm speaking to the basketball fan crowd, but I think all sports fans can appreciate the story of the underdog giving 110 percent to make his dream come true. If you haven't seen this feel-good flick yet, make it a priority. Check out the trailer below, and happy weekending!