Year-Round News & Updates on the Minnesota Timberwolves
Shabazz Muhammad has finished his D-League stint and his finale was another 20-point, high-rebound games.
Muhammad went off a game-high 26 points and helped the Iowa Energy take down the defending D-League champion Rio Grande Valley Vipers. This was a battle of the two highest scoring D-League teams and the result was a 135-112 Iowa win.
Muhammad scored 26 points, grabbed 9 rebounds (3 offensive), dished 2 assists, had 2 steals, 3 fouls and 1 turnover in 33 minutes. Shabazz shot 11-of-19 from the field, 0-for-2 from deep and 4-for-6 from the line.
Flip Saunders was in attendance at Sunday's game and following another great performance from Shabazz, he pulled him aside and told him that he'd be returning to Minnesota to rejoin the Timberwolves.
I think it's important the Shabazz doesn't spend long periods of time in the D-League and that he is still around the team, however as the roster currently stands, I think it's only a matter of time before he returns to Iowa for another D-League stint.
Muhammad has certainly played well enough in the D-League to get a look in Adelman's rotation, but with all 15 players healthy and injury-free and the reserve backcourt of J.J. Barea & Alexey Shved playing a bit better in recent weeks--coupled with the return of Chase Budinger & Luc Richard Mbah a Moute from injuries and there's simply no time for Muhammad at this next level right now.
If the Wolves were to lose a couple of their wing players to injury or some other unforeseen situation, that would certainly open up time for Muhammad, but unless that happens, Shabazz will likely spend the majority of the season bouncing back and forth between the Wolves and the Energy.
Adelman says that his offensive game is very developed however, like with a lot of young players he needs to improve his defensive skills to earn some playing time in his rotation. With Shabazz's athleticism, above-average foot speed and 6'11" wingspan he's got all the physical tools to become a decent defender in this League.
Here's Muhammad's four-game stat log from his stint in the D-League...as well as his D-League career averages.
Here's the full game (Energy vs. Vipers) courtesy of YouTube.
The Wolves are back in action on Wednesday vs. Derrick Williams and the Sacramento Kings. It's likely that Shabazz will join Robbie Hummel on the inactive list for that one.
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