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Preseason Finale: Dysfunction rolls into Milwaukee

The focus tonight will be on the court for once

NBA: Preseason-Oklahoma City Thunder at Minnesota Timberwolves Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota Timberwolves at Milwaukee Bucks

7:30 pm CST

Well, it’s been a long week for the Timberwolves. The story needs no introduction, as Jimmy Butler has made sure everything that has happened within the organization has been made very, very public. The dysfunction and chaos is both hilarious and embarrassing.

With that said, let’s try to focus on what’s going to happen on the court tonight. This is the Timberwolves second preseason game in a row against Milwaukee as they dropped the home contest, 125-107.

It’s going to be extremely interesting to see how Karl-Anthony Towns looks tonight. He’s been the subject of attacks from Butler this week and it will be intriguing to see how engaged and interested he looks. Towns has been extremely low maintenance during his time in Minnesota, and often has been the good soldier.

It’s sad to see some people reside in Butler’s corner during all of this, while Towns has done nothing but show up to work every day and do his job extremely well.

The preseason, as a whole, has been ugly for Minnesota, and there’s no reason to think that will change tonight. The Bucks are a talented team with a crazy amount of depth, and they likely will perform better than last year solely because of the upgrade at head coach (Mike Budenholzer).

For Minnesota, the bench wings will get a lot of action. Obviously, Butler isn’t going to be playing. Andrew Wiggins will also not be present, as he’s expecting the birth of his first child.

This will allow Minnesota to get a look at the second unit of wing players. Hopefully, it means that we will get a look at James Nunnally, the sharp-shooter who was signed over the summer. If Nunnally is capable of keeping up with the pace of the NBA game, his shooting would be a welcome addition to a Timberwolves team starved for spacing.

The absence of Butler and Wiggins should also open up quite a few opportunities for the rookies. Josh Okogie has looked more impressive than Keita Bates-Diop thus far, but tonight would be a great time for Bates-Diop to showcase his talent for the Minnesota brass.

I never thought I’d say this, but it stinks that this is the last preseason game. All that means is that the regular season is approaching fast and Minnesota is still in complete disarray. The fact that this entire franchise has blown up so close to the regular season is peak Timberwolves. They’ve managed to suck the joy out of the beginning of the regular season, a time that is supposed to be full of excitement and hope for each team.

Anyways, it would be nice to see the team come out and execute defensively tonight. They’ve been atrocious defensively thus far, and that seems likely to be a theme that will carry on into the regular season. Whichever coach comes in next is going to have to fix that, and it is getting more likely with each passing day that that coach is going to come in this season.

Projected Line-ups

Minnesota Timberwolves

Jeff Teague

Derrick Rose

Josh Okogie

Taj Gibson

Karl-Anthony Towns

Milwaukee Bucks

Eric Bledsoe

Malcolm Brogdon

Khris Middleton

Giannis Antetokounmpo

Brook Lopez