I thought about taking the high-road for roughly two half seconds and then decided against it. It’s really just a shame that Jimmy Butler was rejected at the rim in the closing seconds tonight to clinch a Minnesota Timberwolves victory in Miami. A real shame indeed.
What an awesome freaking win. Does it mean anything in the grand scheme of things? Nope, not even a little bit! It was fun as hell, though. Man.
It feels wrong to start anywhere other than with Jordan McLaughlin, who took future All-Defensive Team member Bam Adebayo off the dribble to sink the game winning bucket for the Wolves. He was a game high +20. Kudos to Ryan Saunders for playing J-Mac alongside D’Angelo Russell down the stretch. More of that pairing, please!
After J-Mac, you have to talk about D’Angelo Russell. Holy smokes, can that guy shoot the ball. I severely underrated just how special he was in that regard, and just how good he is offensively in general. That’s a legitimate offensive star right there. On the night, he poured in 7 threes on his way to a super efficient 27 points to go along with 5 boards and 6 assists. That’ll do, my friends.
I don’t think I could make it through one of these without mentioning how much I appreciate Malik Beasley’s attitude, energy, and demeanor. He plays so damn hard each and every night it’s impossible to get upset with him. He just kept attacking down the stretch and made a pair of huge free throws.
A lot of the role players had great nights, too. James Johnson contributed a nice 11/5/4. Kelan Martin contributed 11 points, Jarrett Culver had one of his better games in recent memory. Juancho Hernangomez gave the offense a big lift as well, scoring 17 points on 7-11 shooting. It’s really difficult to find much to complain about offensively.
That was just so much fun. The Clippers game feels like ages ago already, and this one felt a little different with Beasley AND Russell leading the charge. Tonight was a model for how that backcourt can work.
I’m really not sure what else to say. That was a phenomenal win from a team who at least needed to show the fan-base some signs of life. They did it by having their key new pieces (Beasley, Russell) pair with the front office’s most impressive diamond in the rough (J-Mac) to close on a 20-5 run and defeat Jimmy Butler without Karl-Anthony Towns. I’m not sure a game could end any better than D-Lo making a great defensive play to swat Butler. I’m going to enjoy that one for a while.
If we had any question about where Gersson Rosas priorities were, well:
That feels good. Now, for the tweets!
Wait sooooo Jimmy Butler lost to some 3rd stringers and D-Lo??? pic.twitter.com/tmZ2S2KKxY— Barflaan Tedoe (@The_Barftender) February 27, 2020
It’s pretty clear that Jimmy Butler has never faced a third-stringer like Jordan McLaughlin.— Kyle Theige (@KyleTheige) February 27, 2020