The Timberwolves square off against the LA Clippers for the second time this week. The first game was an ugly win on Sunday, followed by an uglier loss to the Memphis Grizzlies on Monday.
The Wolves have been playing just eight players total in recent games and this has some people around the league questioning Tom Thibodeau. We will see if tonight he plays more of a rotation or if it is more of the same for the Wolves.
What to watch for
After the addition of Jimmy Butler, the Timberwolves were projected to be one of the best teams in the Western conference. A part of being a good team in the NBA is having the ability to defeat bad teams. The Clippers in their current state, are a bad team. The Wolves need to be able to handily beat this type of team this season if they want to end up with a decent seed come playoff time.
Over the last few games, Jimmy Butler has really been taking over an alpha role with the Timberwolves. Butler has averaged 28.3 PPG over the last three contests in comparison to 18.9 PPG on the season. These statistics really show how Jimmy has been taking on a different role as of late. This could just be a "hot streak" so to speak, so tonight will tell a lot about whether or not Butler will continue his dominance.
Over the past few games as previously mentioned, Coach Thibodeau has been using just three players off the bench while playing his starters heavy minutes. This can lead to late season fatigue and even injury for some of the Timberwolves' key players. Just look at what has become of former MVP Derick Rose's career after playing under Thibs. Hopefully sooner, rather than later, Thibs will use his bench more willingly.
Minnesota: PG Jeff Teague, SG Andrew Wiggins, SF Jimmy Butler, PF Taj Gibson, C Karl-Anthony Towns
LA: PG Austin Rivers, SG C.J Williams, SF Wes Johhnson, PF Jamil Williams, C DeAndre Jordan
Timberwolves win 106-91. The Wolves are just flat out the better team. Hopefully this is enough to come out with the win.