The Minnesota Timberwolves finished their first three games at Las Vegas Summer League with a 1-2 record, defeating the Los Angeles Lakers and losing to the Chicago Bulls and Utah Jazz. The Wolves are seeded 18th of 24 teams for the tournament round, and will begin their journey to the Summer League title against the Portland Trail Blazers tonight in Las Vegas. The full bracket is here, if you're curious how things shook out for the rest of the teams. The Toronto Raptors are the #1 overall seed for the tournament.
The Wolves will play at least one more game in Vegas, regardless of the result of tonight's game.
- If MIN wins, they'll face the #2 seeded Boston Celtics and Marcus Smart on Thursday night at 9:30pm CT.
- If MIN loses, they'll face the loser of tonight's Cavaliers-Bulls game on Friday at 5:30pm CT.
If the Wolves lose tonight, the game on Friday will be their last of Summer League. If they win, they'll keep playing until they lose, which is how a playoff system works.
The Blazers also went 1-2 in their first three games, with losses to the Celtics and Spurs and a win over the Dallas Mavericks. I got to watch their game against Dallas, and did a guest spot over at Blazer's Edge on Noah Vonleh's first game in Portland colors, which you can read here.
Vonleh, Tim Frazier, Allen Crabbe and Pat Connaughton are players to keep an eye on for the Blazers. I particularly enjoyed watching Connaughton, but the battle between Vonleh and Karl-Anthony Towns, who I hope are matched up for at least part of the game, should be another interesting test for Towns.
|G Lorenzo Brown||G Tim Frazier|
|G Othyus Jeffers||G Allen Crabbe|
|F C.J. Williams||F Pat Connaughton|
|F Adreian Payne||F Noah Vonleh|
|C Karl-Anthony Towns||C Daniel Orton|
The Wolves' roster is rapidly shrinking. Tyus Jones and Zach LaVine are both out (at the ESPYs in Los Angeles), and Brady Heslip and Sam Thompson have both left the team. Heslip's going to join Anthony Bennett on Team Canada for the Pan-Am Games (first game next Tuesday), and Thompson, unfortunately, has been sick the whole week (both via Darren Wolfson of KSTP).
This leaves the Wolves with a whole lot of Lorenzo Brown, which is uncomfortably reminiscent of Brown's third game with the team, when he was the only healthy point guard and played all but five seconds of the game. Now, it's summer league, so that shouldn't happen tonight, but expect Ryan Saunders to run out some... creative lineups tonight.
How to Watch
The game will be on NBA TV, and will be available through the NBA's streaming service if you took advantage of that for this week and a half. I'll be livetweeting over on the ol' CH twitter account, but I'll try and keep an eye on the comments if people have questions I can answer from Vegas. Enjoy the game, if you're staying up late with me.