Welcome to the third addition of our weekly series that examines which players have had a good week of basketball and which players have... well not. After an extremely disappointing week of basketball that saw the Minnesota Timberwolves go winless, it’s fairly difficult to find many “stocks” that increased in value since we last talked. Last week only saw two players get praised in the rising section but today we’re going to look at three for both rising and falling.
Stock Up #1: Naz Reid
Season stats: 14.4 MPG, 8.3 PTS, 0.9 AST, 3.0 REB, 59.1 TS%, 34.6 3P%, 113 oRTG, 104 dRTG
The fan favorite big man from LSU is making his second straight appearance on the rising list after a week of solid play. Despite getting the third least minutes per game ahead of just McLaughlin and Prince, Reid is making the most of them. He didn’t start out very well but his bounce back has shown exactly why so many Wolves fans love Naz.
Minnesota Timberwolves points scored per 100 possessions:— Timberwolves Clips (@WolvesClips) November 6, 2021
Karl-Anthony Towns - 32.4
Anthony Edwards - 31.1
Naz Reid - 27.6
Naz is a starting-caliber big, yet he ranks 10th on the Wolves in minutes per game (14.5).
Naz has certainly earned a larger role.pic.twitter.com/WQOeNvrBsd
In a small sample size, Reid ranks 3rd in oRTG, 2nd in dRTG, 4th in VORP (value over replacement player) and 3rd in TS% on the Wolves. He has also looked good next to Karl-Anthony Towns in the limited time they’ve played together so expect more of that as the Wolves struggle without a true power forward. I said it last week and I’ll say it again. Find Naz Reid more minutes!
Stock Up #2: Anthony Edwards
Season stats: 36.1 MPG, 23.4 PTS, 3.3 AST, 6.3 REB, 50.3 TS%, 31.4 3P%, 100 oRTG, 108 dRTG
Edwards started the season as cold as possible shooting the ball. It wasn’t going to take much for him to begin to rise in this series and that’s exactly what’s happening. The shot still isn’t where anyone wants it to be, but the stroke looks much more confident and collected as he shot 4/9 from deep against the Grizzlies.
He’s clearly inexperienced and not ready to lead a team. The expectations placed on his shoulders for this season were massive but we have to realize he’s still just 20-years old. Edwards is going to be fine, just give him some time to settle in. It’s unfortunate that the Wolves are already running out of time it seems.
Anthony Edwards is continuing to expand his driving repertoire on almost a nightly basis. Incredible body control, change of pace, deceleration, and ground coverage on euros. pic.twitter.com/VrlZr4ZtY9— Tyler Metcalf (@tmetcalf11) November 9, 2021
If he can build off his performance from deep against Memphis and get into his usual groove when driving to the rim, watch out. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see him land back on the rising list next week or fall to the falling list. The Wolves desperately need superstar Anthony Edwards to make an appearance sooner rather than later.
Stock Up #3: D’Angelo Russell
Season stats: 29.0 MPG, 17.0 PTS, 4.9 AST, 4.0 REB, 49 TS%, 32.8 3P%, 96 oRTG, 109 dRTG
Russell only played one game this week, but he looked great for most of it and his stock was underneath the floor. He did that thing against Memphis where he makes basketball look so easy and fun to watch. Russell tends to either do that or do the complete opposite, there’s been no in-between this season.
The Wolves are in desperate need of the best version of D’Angelo Russell and the Memphis game was encouraging for that happening. He scored 30 points on 63% true shooting with seven assists and just two turnovers. The ability for Russell to create shots for himself and others was clearly missing in the two games Russell missed. He can be so good when things are going well.
D’Angelo Russell step-back 3 out of the pick-and-roll with Karl-Anthony Towns pic.twitter.com/B1TmlqXo42— Timberwolves Clips (@WolvesClips) November 9, 2021
Oh, and for those who like revenge games, the next two are against the Warriors and Lakers. You can be sure Russell will want to come out on fire for both.
Stock Down #1: Jarred Vanderbilt
Season stats: 19.2 MPG, 5.4 PTS, 0.8 AST, 6.0 REB, 54.1 TS%, 0.00 3P%, 111 oRTG, 104 dRTG
If you look up the definition up a one way player you’ll just find a picture of Jarred Vanderbilt. He, like many others on this roster, is great on one side of the court but a complete liability on the other side. For Vando, he will always be great defensively and rebounding the ball but the offense was noticeably bad.
It’s not just that Vando was missing big shots, he did that a lot, but defenders have figured out they just don’t have to play defense on him. You’d think he has COVID the way defenders stay away from him and just double team Towns before he even touches the ball. Vando is great for Towns on defense but the opposite of what he needs on offense. It would be cool if the Wolves could do hockey line changes with Vando and Beasley every time they cross the floor.
You can really see this at the 0:40 mark of this video for a few plays. Vando is so wide open the defense does not care.
The Timberwolves were shut down in the second half. They were out scored 57-27. Towns had just 2 shots.— Cooper (@CoopCarlson) November 6, 2021
Here’s 1:38 of the Clippers just completely shutting him down and Towns turning the ball over. I included the only couple solid plays as well. https://t.co/gQzMwi3bI9 pic.twitter.com/8aXHIyJFZ3
Stock Down #2: Jaden McDaniels
Season stats: 25.8 MPG, 4.7 PTS, 0.9 AST, 4.3 REB, 47.4 TS%, 26.1 3P%, 91 oRTG, 107 dRTG
Our beloved Jaden has had a pretty rough go of things this week which is becoming far too common in the 2021-22 season. In the first game he defended Paul George and George decided to be the greatest player ever that night. McDaniels didn’t like that so he decided no one was ever going to score on him again in game two versus the Clippers. In order to assure that, he fouled out in his 13th minute of the game. Mission failed successfully?
This past week was just more of the same with an occasional glimpse of hope, but not enough for McDaniels to trend upwards. With that said, don’t be surprised if he finds himself on the rising list next week. His great defense will always be there and McDaniels may be starting to come alive on offense. Maybe this dunk will get him going.
Stock Down #3: Taurean Prince
Season stats: 14.0 MPG, 2.8 PTS, 0.7 AST, 2.1 REB, 32.5 TS%, 16.7 3P%, 73 oRTG, 111 dRTG
Prince has somehow found a way to get worse every week despite being awful every single week (that makes sense, right?) It’s not easy to be as bad as Prince has been to start the season and week three was no different. He actually got the start in the second Clippers game in what appeared to be an attempt to get him going. He scored five points! They were also his only five points in 40 minutes of action this past week.
After starting and playing 24 total minutes in the abysmal loss to the Clippers, Prince played just six minutes versus Memphis. Maybe you can chalk that up to the matchup, or maybe he’s slowly being fazed out of the rotation. Either way, I’d love for him to get off this list next week whether it’s by not playing or playing well.
Minnesota Market Watch
Every week I go over the main players for who rose, who fell, and who was neutral. After that I rank every player on the roster without paragraphs explaining each decision. Here is where everyone stands after this last week.
- UP: Reid, Edwards, Russell, Okogie, Bolmaro
- DOWN: Vanderbilt, McDaniels, Prince, Layman, McLaughlin
- HOLD: Towns, Beasley, Beverley, Nowell