On May 18th, the Minnesota Timberwolves will enter the NBA Draft Lottery for a humiliating thirteenth time in 21 seasons. What's even more depressing is that in their previous twelve trips, the Timberwolves have never improved their draft positioning. In fact, on several occaions they've actually found themselves propelled backwards as another team hooked up with lady luck and leap-frogged ahead of the Wolves. Adding insult to injury, the two times that Minnesota did have their ping-pong ball come up a winner was in 2008 when they finished third-to-last and were awarded the #3 pick (whoopie!) and 1992 when they finished dead last and got knocked back to spots to, again, the #3 pick (gee, thanks!).
As you can clearly see, the NBA Draft Lottery has been a house of horrors for Wolves fans. Seemingly every year we get our hopes up, only to end up punched in our collective crotch when David Stern flips our card over all too early. One can only imagine the carnage that awaits the luckless Wolves as they approach, of all numbers, lottery #13. Could we possibly see Washington, Sacramento, and Golden State come up winners and push the T-Wolves all the way back to pick #5? Or perhaps even more agonizing, have the Wolves drop back a single position to their tried and true #3 slot, where they'd find themselves just outside the Wall/Turner jackpot?
Like every other team, the Timberwolves get to select a team representative during the lottery presentation. Often, this person is a high-ranking front-office executive, but the Wolves have tried to mix it up lately in hopes of finding their "lucky charm". In 2007 Randy Foye sat in for the Wolves. (Nothing spells luck like sending a certified draft bust to represent you!) Last year, it was Kevin Love. (One has to wonder if the Wolves are subtley reminding David Stern exactly how poorly we've done in the lottery, in hopes of a merciful last-second switcheroo to help us out...) In 2008, the Wolves sent Fred Hoiberg who brought along a teddy bear that was given to him by a child with a heart condition similar to the one that ended his career. Even a sappy move like that couldn't sway the lottery gods in their vendetta agains the Timberwolves!
Here at the T.W.B., we like to consider ourselves realists, and the reality is that breaking the Wolves' lottery curse is going to take a lot more than Johnny Flynn wearing a Live Strong bracelet. This is an epic amount of bad karma that we're attempting to reverse and it will take nothing less than a truly legendary individual to get it done. With this principle in mind, the TWB NBA Draft Lottery Mascot Challenge was born! On May 18th, TWolves Blog will be sending its own representative to Secaucus, NJ to take part in the 2010 draft lottery. It is our belief that this hero will cause a shift in the 21 years of horrific luck that has plagued this franchise and finally turn the tide in the Wolves favor once and for all!
However, finding the right man, woman, or creature for the job is no simple task. This is where all of you come in. Over the next several days, the TWolves Blog staff will be making nominations for the mascot, and we'd like you to do so as well. Feel free to post an image or video of your candidate using our fancy new comments system. You can also nominate in the forum thread we've created. After a few days, we'll take all the worthy nominations and seed them in a 64 mascot tournament, March Madness style. Then we'll conduct votes, round by round, until our 2010 representative is crowned. The winner will then make the trip to Secaucus where the Wolves will land the #1 or #2 pick!
At least that's the plan! And now, we bring to you our first six nominees, courtesy of your TWB editorial staff. Click "Read More" below to view the nominees. Remember, these six aren't guaranteed to be in the tournament, they're just suggestions. Once everyone has made their nominations, we'll then select the best 64 submissions to face off in the tourney. Without further ado, here's your first six nominees...
The Smoke Monster
And the one and only...
We'd like to see as many quality nominees as possible, so please comment away in the blog or the forum. If you can only type a name, that's cool. Photos or Video would be even better! There is one person out there with the power to change the Wolves' fortunes, and by working together, we can find them!
When John Wall or Evan Turner is wearing a Wolves jersey, this will all be worth it!