All in all, this was just a disappointing game, through and through. A win could've gotten Minnesota back on track, but now they've dropped 6 of their last 7 games and have fallen out of the playoff picture.
The lack of urgency seemed to permeate the entire Wolves squad as they again played without much heart. There were some other guys that stepped up offensively, but no one seemed to interesting in locking down defensively, that's why Minnesota allowed the second-most season-high in points for opponents with 115 (high being 124 vs. PHO).
The Kings didn't seem capable of missing a shot, while the TWolves couldn't buy a bucket. We'll get to those team stats in a moment, though. Beyond Sacramento's hot shooting, the Wolves couldn't hold on to the ball to save their lives. The Kings had no problem capitalizing on those TO's.
If Minnesota wants to get back on track a matchup against the Kings would've seemed like the perfect matchup. A game vs. the newly-'blown up' Golden State Warriors HAS TO result in a Minnesota win.
Let's take a look at some individual statistics for each team's top players in tonight's contest...
Both teams got good production from a wide variety of their players. Minnesota was without Nikola Pekovic who is nursing a sore ankle. Love didn't play his usual 40 minutes, but still had a 20-10, of course it took him 20 shots to get those 21pts. I think that's something that people overlook. His numbers are great, but he's taking a lot of shots every game out. I do feel he should look to find his teammates more often, he did have 3 assists, however. As you can see the bench was more involved. With Pek out Darko Milicic got the start, but played just 6 minutes (all in the 1st Q). Randolph saw some extended minutes (played 20) and shot 5-of-8 from the field and was a rebound shy of a double-double. I'd expect Randolph's playing time to continue to be sporadic.
For the Kings, Isaiah Thomas played just 28 minutes in that starting point guard role, but shot 60% from the field & 67% from deep. Thornton followed up a 36-point outing vs. the Celtics on Friday with a 24-point outburst. The Kings were without one of their top players (Evans--with a sprained left ankle), but Salmons stepped up in the starting small forward position and Greene came off the bench with 11.
Let's take a look at some team stats...
The story? Turnovers, turnovers, turnovers....and of course--points leading to turnovers. Minnesota turned the ball over 21 times and allowed 29 points for the Kings. Minnesota stuck pretty close in percentages, the out-rebounded the Kings, got more bench production, stuck close in fast break points as well as points in the paint, but it was those turnovers that really 'shot the Wolves in the foot' in this one. Turnovers definitely tell the story of this 16-point loss.
Minnesota will be back in action tomorrow vs. the Golden State Warriors. Tip is set for 9:30pmCT and full gameday recap can be found on this site tomorrow afternoon, until then, thanks for reading HOWL and GO WOLVES!
Cody D. Anderson
A Wolves fan bringing you Gameday Recaps all season long!