Jonas, perhaps on his first day of 8th grade
Use the comments here to discuss the game as you wish, or as always, join and chat in the forums in the game thread that you should hopefully be able to find. Also, there is still plenty of time to get involved in the very fun TIMBERPUP GAME this season, so post your game predictions and get involved in the challenges that the wise sage roundhouse presents to those fortunate participants each game.
On to the game. Well, the Wolves head to Toronto today to face off against former coach Dwayne Casey and easily the Eastern Conference's #1 sleeper team: The Raptors. Tip off at 5 central on NBATV and local TV as well. Here are 5 pre-game bullets. Unlike the King's game preview, hopefully the bullets show up in this post. I swear they are at least there in the site editor. Because, as always, who doesn't love bullet points?
-Kyle Lowry. Look out for this fantastic, all-around, Swiss Army knife, stat sheet stuffing, extremely underrated guard. Good Lord did the Raptors land a steal in this guy. Conlangelo, the league's all-time most overrated GM, made a good move here with Houston. One-on-one, Luke Ridnour is going to have some huge challenges with him, and it will take some good help effort from the other four starters to contain him and his shot creation. PS...remember when him and Randy Foye starred at Villanova together? Remember when Foye was "the better player?" It is weird how these things work out. Why do things like this happen? So odd.
-Rookie Spotlight: Jonas Valanciunas. Jonas will have his work cut out for him. Pek had a very rare off night and clearly struggled being double and triple teamed in the post against Sacramento. Jonas has the length to get a hand up vs. Pek and this should be an interesting length vs. girth matchup. But Jonas has the makings of a solid all-around center. Not much else is known about the guy just yet, so keep an eye on him as the marquee rookie of the game.
-Pek in the Post/DWill at the 4. Pek struggled in game one, plain and simple. You would too if you were triple teamed by three guys who were 6-feet 10 inches tall every time you received a pass. What would help a bit here is if Lord Adelman at least attempted to get Derrick Williams a consistent offensive role while Love is out. The floor need be stretched, and D still showed us nothing special in the first game (to no one's surprise). Pigs need to fly here. We really need a stretch to get Pek some room down low or he could struggle early on. He is no longer a surprise player and has earned the respect of opposing scouts. When Love does get back from injury, look out. The best stretch 4 and an elite post scorer is a rare and awesome thing to have. But I can't help but wish Lord Adelman would try to implement Derrick's (underachieving to say the least) ability as a stretch 4 a little more. At least give the guy a chance.
-Depth. The other night, against the Kings, the Wolves (and the Kings for that matter) basically shot like a WNBA team. That isn't meant to be derogatory, that is simply what happened. The Wolves had to basically adjust and win the game at the free throw line (a great sign, by the way, that the team can finally get there). If not for Barea playing like Derrick Rose (!!) and getting to the rim at will...and finishing...the game would have been an even more hideous spectacle to behold. This presents two points. 1. How awesome are Wolves games going to be when those shots are falling and the team is shooting over 50%? 2. The Wolves' depth has improved so dramatically by purging the garbage from Kahn's 2nd reign that the starting lineup can throw up a steaming pile of 33% FG% and JJ Barea can will us to victory on offense. This is just...there are no words. The days of Beasley one-and done- 22 footers are over.
-Greg Stiemsma. Gets his own bullet. Screw DeRozan. His $40 million contract makes him unmentionable and not worth a bullet. Greg was just awesome in his Wolves debut and let's hope the trend continues. He made a positive play seemingly every few seconds. Blocking shots, getting pissed, and generally acting like Darko Milicic after seeing his first naked boob. Keep it up Steemer, and keep proving your worth.
Prediction: Even though the Wolves seem to always dog it in Canada, I can't predict a loss until they lose a game. Embrace Homerism. Wolves win it...probably thanks to a 15 and 10 night from Cunningham or something weird/awesome.
If this blowout by the Raptors are any indication of the future, then the Wolves are in a lot of trouble. They have lost Kevin Love for the season and Ricky Rubio is still shelved due to his injuries. Brandon Roy looks as if he should have stayed retired and the rest of the team simply looked out of sync. Wolves fans are in for a LONG season if this sort of play continues.
@slapdoghoops Love out for the season? Lol egads.
1. Thanks for stopping by
2. I agree Roy looked awful.
3. Love will only be out for a couple more weeks. He should be back yet this month, not the season, in case you were not aware.
@WallyWorld Really, I did not know that. With the news that Love broke his hand, I figured that he would be out for the season. That's what I found on most the articles I read too. they had him out for the entire season. Well, lucky for the Wolves, they'll have him back soon.
Brandon Roy played the worst half of basketball I've seen from a player, ever. He passed like Christian Ponder. He defended like Johnny Flynn. Man..it was bad. Between that quarter and the Vikings, it's hard out here...
@Daddyfatsax I honestly can't disagree, That was simply awful. Rust? We can hope. It looked like he still had the ability to create in the pre-season. The Raptors defense was just solid too. Roy couldn't dribble the ball 6 feet before getting trapped by a help defender on the perimeter. Case is a good, good coach and deserved an extended stay in Toronto.
@Daddyfatsax Well at least I don't feel bad then about missing both the games.
Lowry is such a STUD beast. He will eviscerate us. I dunno about the game, it could go either way. We were so garbage the first game, and Toronto is a lot better this year. Especially defensively. Jonas looks good and should be a nice matchup vs Pek. Too early in the season to know beforehand how it will play out. I'm thinking it will be a good game though, and hoping we can pull off the W.
Kyle Lowry. What is the issue with underrating him? He will prove the following this year:
Lowry > Deron painted-hair-line-WIlliams, Nash, Holiday, Parkour, Wall, etc.
Lowry < Rubio > every PG combined in one monster designed by the government to take down Rubio
Lowry is in the conversation with CP3, Rondo, and Westbrick15-shots-a-game-I-should-have-passed-to-Durant-but-I'm-a-shooting-guard-but-my-coach-sucks-so-I-play-PG-and-do-whatever-I-want
Build around Jonas and Lowry, trade Vagnani. After they lose tonight they should immediately look into a trade to get rid of Andrea Bargnani and Derozan (even Raptor fans are pissed at that dumb contract).