An NFL Fan’s Guide to the 2015-16 Timberwolves

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Mar 29, 2015; New Orleans, LA, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves guard Zach LaVine (8) dunks over New Orleans Pelicans center

Omer Asik

(3) during the second half of a game at the Smoothie King Center. The Pelicans defeated the Timberwolves 110-88. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Zach LaVine = early-career kick-returner Devin Hester

This is my favorite comparison because I think it works so well. Both LaVine and Hester are known for one particular athletic ability – blinding speed for Hester, jumping for LaVine.

Both burst onto the scene in their respective rookie years as a result of that athleticism, as Hester had five breath-taking punt/kick return touchdowns and LaVine won the dunk contest in spectacular fashion.

They both were also an awkward fit at a position they both were not comfortable with. Hester was tried as a receiver by the Bears but never really turned into the number one weapon they thought he could be.

LaVine was a point guard for a large chunk of last season, but his ball handling wasn’t good enough and he isn’t a point guard at heart. The Bears ended the Hester-as-a-top-receiver experiment after a couple of years; hopefully the LaVine-as-a-point-guard experiment ended last year.

Hester was able to be an electrifying return man when he was able to focus on that role. LaVine should be able to focus on running the wing, launching threes, and soaring for dunks on the fast break this year. His position and role should be solidified this year, and a result of that clarity should be an uptick in efficiency and production.

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