Ugh. The first four losses hurt, but this one really stings.
Out of their first five games, the Wolves easily had the best chance of winning this one. But an embarrassing offensive meltdown in the fourth quarter doomed them to dropping this game to the Kings, and falling to 0-5.
I have no idea why this team can't get their act together in the fourth quarter. And specifically, the last six or seven minutes of the game. It's been the same story in virtually every game this season...the Wolves put themselves in a position to grab the win, but the offense falls flat in the final minutes.
We've almost gotten to the point where we can script out the exact course of a Wolves game. Our squad gets off to a hot start in the first quarter, but we put ourselves in a hole in the second and third periods. And even though the Pups battle back in the fourth, they ultimately fall short.
The Wolves did an exceptional job of getting up and down the court to start the game, and their transition-oriented offense garnered them 28 first quarter points.
Problem is, though, that there's a fine line between an up-tempo game and a sloppy game. The Wolves offense, in the second quarter, went from the former category to the latter category.
T-Wolves -vs- Orlando Magic (11.06.07)
I went to the game last night with little expectations for a win. That’s ok though, as I’m just hoping to see improvement from our guys and blah blah blah, you get the gist. For some reason I just thought Orlando would come in a take care of business. A quick trip through the game thread in the forum (and other places around the net) and you’ll see that quite a few people thought the Wolves could pull out their first win. My guess is that a lot of people think that we’ve been playing well (which we have) and that Orlando is only a “so-so” team. I was concerned as to who on our team was going to slow down Dwight Howard, with Theo possibly out for tonight. It turns out that Theo was a late scratch, and the answer to my question is “no one.” Anyhow, if you are looking for pre-game happy hour establishments, I can’t recommend “Gameworks” enough. Great deals, stiff drinks, and bartenders with selective memory when it comes to adding up the tab. There is a good chance that Bonk and I set up camp at Gameworks last night. There is an equally good chance that I may or may not have a pounding headache right now.
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First win of the season? It'll be a tough one for the Wolves, but it'd be sweet to take one from this Magic team.
*Rashad was taking that shot the whole way. Great pump in the paint to get an open look...let's hope he can get off to a hot start.
*What's that? A Wolf getting sent to the free throw line? Get outta here!
*Man, that's the second team foul on the Magic in the first two minutes. How about that.
*Loving the post move by Jeff...sweet hook shot. Man, that guy has such an immense array of moves in the low block. I'm continually amazed by his footwork.
*Another foul on Orlando? That's their third team foul so far...this is a great sign that a) the Wolves are finally drawing some fouls, and b) the refs are actually blowing the whistle.
*Wolves off to another quick start, as they lead 13-4. Of course, the big question is how long they can maintain this early advantage.
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If you have nothing to do tomorrow night, and you're a fan of the NBA and its more spectacular players, I would suggest trying to get a ticket to the game against the Magic.
Everyone is well aware of the highlight-explosiveness of guys like Kobe, LeBron, Carmelo and D-Wade. Everyone is aware of the highlight-inspiring team play of the Phoenix Suns and the visually arousing play when someone like Jason Kidd is allowed to run an offense. Those guys are definitely must watches (as is KG), but, again, everyone knows about them.
What I want to do is single out the three guys who you may or may not know that are 100x more impressive to watch in person than on TV. The first guy is here tomorrow night and, if you don't know him, you will. The other two guys you probably know, one for the wrong reason, and the other for being boring. I wanted to single these guys out because if you take away their media personas and come watch them in person, you gain a different perspective into how good and entertaining they are.
Since he's here tomorrow night, my first must watch is DWIGHT HOWARD.
Please hit the "Read more" link to go after the jump and hear about why you should check these guys out.
The quick start didn’t last, unfortunately, and the Wolves offense gradually slowed down until it became absolutely stagnant in the fourth quarter. That opened the door for Denver to grab control of the game…and the Nuggs took advantage. Carmello simply couldn’t be stopped in crunch time.
It was a disappointing loss, for sure. We gave the Nuggets a battle for the first 42 minutes, and lost it in the last six.
But there’s still a lot to feel good about. no comments
Fresh off an early morning TiVO viewing, here are my thoughts on the Wolves' season opener...
1. This team is fun to watch!
When this game began, I really wasn't sure what to expect. We were facing a Nuggets team that should be in the post-season and features big names like Allen Iverson and Carmelo Anthony. The Wolves, on the other hand, were basically composed of youngsters and veterans who had been tossed aside. The optimistic part of me wanted to believe we'd play harder than the Nuggets and hustle our way to a victory. The realist inside of me thought we were horribly outmatched and were due for our first home opener loss since before the Kevin Garnett era.
In actuality, this game was a little bit of both. There were times when the Wolves play was a thing of beauty. The offense was flowing with good passes and smart shots. The defense held strong and the Wolves cleaned up the boards. And then there were times when our inexperience was fully on display as the Thuggets, er Nuggets, completely overpowered us. Regardless, this is clearly the most fun Wolves team we've gotten to watch in years. We've finally got an inside game going - something we've haven't had for over a decade. We've also got a fair amount of players who can stroke the three in McCants, Buckner, and occasionally Gomes and Telfair. But perhaps the most fun part of watching this team is that they just make you feel good when they're playing well. When guy who have been tossed aside and criticized for so long like Ratliff, Telfair, and McCants start making things happen on the court, it's exciting.
I might be getting ahead of myself here, but there were times during the first three quarters where this team made me thing, "The playoffs aren't out of the question". They would make me debate between, "Is it better to be an 8th seed, or take our lumps this year and add another top rookie to our roster?". After what we've been through the past three years, the fact that I can have those thoughts is a very good thing.
In anticipation of the 2007-08 Minnesota Timberwolves season, TWolvesBlog is counting down the days 'til tip-off by featuring some of our team's players. These player articles were written by several of our forum members, as well as the site's regular contributors. The final piece in this series was written by our forum member, "WhiskeyDizzy." I'd like to present to you the new face of our franchise, power forward Al Jefferson. Good luck in the home opener tonight guys.
AL Jefferson - "The New Face Of The Franchise"
Number 25 for the 2007-2008 Minnesota Timberwolves was born Albus Jefferson in the small town of Monticello, Mississippi on January 4th, 1985. Al attended Prentiss High School in Mississippi, where he excelled as a lost post scorer and dominate big man, winning the Missippi State Class 3A High School Championship in 2002. In 2003, SI.com rated Al Jefferson as the number 1 High School big man in the country ahead of Dwight Howard and Lamarcus Aldridge, saying “Jefferson is a specimen with size, skill and more importantly he produces results…Super prospect.” During his Senior year, Al averaged 42 points, 16 rebounds and 9 blocks per game and was named to the 2004 McDonald’s All-American team. Jefferson initially signed a Letter of Intent to play for the University of Arkansas, but later declared himself eligible for the 2004 NBA draft, where he was selected 15th overall by the Boston Celtics.
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