The Minnesota Timberwolves' woes continue as they just lost to the NBA's worst team (record-wise). Not only did they lose, but they were absolutely blown out in a game where the Wizards led by 20+ in the second half, en route to a 13-point win.
The Wolves found themselves down four points after the first quarter. Derrick Williams found his shot falling early as he ended the first quarter with 8pts & 5reb. The Wizards began the game looking to exploit their advantage in the paint (outscoring MIN in the paint 14-4) as Nene scored 6 of his points in the first and Okafor added 4pts, 4reb, 2ast, 2stls. The entire Wizards team got off to a hot start as they scorched the Wolves for 61.9% FG (13-21).
The second quarter saw the Wizards continue their hot shooting as they ended the first half shooting 59.5% and scoring 31 in the second quarter to take a 14-point 60-46 lead at the half. The Wolves were shooting just 40.9% at the half as well as 0-for-7 from deep. The "10-Day Duo" combined for 12 of the Wolves' 21 second quarter points, each (Mickael & Chris) scoring 6 apiece.
Things didn't get much better in the third quarter. The Wizards scored another 31 points in the third and actually took a 20+ lead during that quarter. The Wolves found themselves down 18 after three quarters. By that time the Wizards had 5 of their 6 players in double-figures and were well on their way to their 10th win of the season.
It was clear that the Wolves likely didn't have a fourth quarter rally in them. They did outscore Washington 28-23 in that final quarter, but were playing against the Wizards second (maybe even third) unit. Gelabale scored 8 of his 15 in that final quarter, while Crawford added 9 of his 19.
The Wolves are now 17-23 on the season, six games under .500 with the season slipping away VERY quickly. If we lose to the Bobcats tomorrow, I might just die.
The Wolves got some good production from their forwards. Williams led the team with 18 as well as his third double-double of the season, but didn't score very efficiently. Kirilenko played only 29 minutes (why?), but still contributed to the scoreboard. I was hoping to see a bit more from him defensively tonight....I would've liked to see more from everyone defensively tonight. Gelabale was the most impressive of the bunch, scoring 6 of his 15 in the second quarter and another 8 in the fourth. He shot 70% from the field and scored from a variety of angles--mid-range jumpers in the paint as well as some easy layup/dunks.
The Wizards had six players in double figures as no seemed to be able to miss a shot. That has too often been the case these past few weeks. Wouldn't it be nice to have a true shooting guard like Jordan Crawford or Bradley Beal on the roster? Someone who can knock down open shots consistently. The past few opponents have taken advantage in the post, but tonight it was the Wizards backcourt taking it to the likes of Ricky, Luke & J.J.
MISC. STATS: Dante tied a season-high with 4 free throw attempts.....Luke Ridnour set a new season-high with his three offensive rebounds (all of which came in the 1st Half).....Ricky Rubio tied season-highs in offensive rebounds (3) and total rebounds (5) while also playing a season-high 31 minutes......Greg Stiemsma tied a season-high with 2 steals and set a new season/career-high with 6 assists (the previous career-high being 3).....Derrick Williams set a new season-high with 17 field goal attempts, his 8 free throw attempts are a season-high that also ties a career-high, his 11 rebounds tie both a season & career-high.....Gelabale set a lot of new season-highs, I'm not going to list them here, check them out under the 'Stats' page.....Chris Johnson tied a season-high with 3 offensive rebounds and set a new season-high with his 1 steal.....
KEY STATS: The Wolves didn't shoot a terrible percentage from the field and were still able to score 101 on the night. The Wolves were without their two best rebounders and still held a +13 on the boards against a team that starts two very capable centers. The Wolves also left thirteen points at the line.......they lost by thirteen points. 61% from the line will never 'cut it'. The Wolves did do a good job of limiting fast break opportunities, however that's the only positive on D tonight. Because altogether they were dreadful, allowed a team to shoot nearly 60% for the game as no one seemed to interested in making stops. Yes, the Wizards had some shooters that were very 'hot' in this one.....but there were a lot of wide open looks.
MISC. STATS: The Wolves are without their two best rebounders and yet they still set a new season-high with their 22 offensive rebounds.....Minnesota's 3 three-pointers made and 2 blocks both tie the second-lowest marks of the season......The Wizards set a new season-high for a Wolves opponent with their 48 made field goals and 114 points, they also set the second-best field goal percentage mark of the season at 57.8%......The Wizards' 6 offensive rebounds are tie the second-worst mark of the year for a Minnesota opponent......
That's all for now, the Wolves are back in action tomorrow night vs. the Bobcats in Charlotte, we'll have a full gameday preview of that one up later tonight, until then thanks for reading HOWL and GO WOLVES!
Cody D. Anderson
A Wolves fan bringing you Gameday Recaps all season long!