Analyzing the best performers, the worst outings and everything in between over the last seven days of Minnesota Timberwolves basketball for this week’s player power rankings.
Despite Jimmy Butler returning mid-week from the knee soreness that had kept him out for the majority of our last power rankings week, the Minnesota Timberwolves as a whole hobbled through a disastrous week over the past five games.
In a frantically scheduled week, the Wolves endured two separate back-to-backs with a game sandwiched in between, ending the power rankings week with a 1-4 record heading into what was a win over the Bucks on Thursday. The below-par week had Minnesota sitting at 32-22 for the season, still just fending off the Oklahoma City Thunder for the fourth seed in the Western Conference.
The week started out in Jimmy Butler-less and lifeless, as the Wolves fell 123-114 to the Portland Trail Blazers. Portland caught fire from beyond the 3-point arc, nailing 17 of their 31 attempts on the night.
Next up was undoubtedly the NBA’s cruelest mission, playing the Golden State Warriors, on a back-to-back, without your team’s best player. It’s safe to say not many fans were holding their breath for a Timberwolves win in this one.
The Timberwolves hung around with the reigning champs, but once again fell to a barrage of 3-pointers. The game finished with 126-113 final.
The Brooklyn Nets matchup that followed the Golden State horror show was the only respite for the week. The Timberwolves finally kept their opponents quiet from 3-point land (9-for-30), leading to a comfortable 111-97 victory.
Despite the Atlanta Hawks being a woeful 14-35 coming in to their home stanza against Minnesota, the Wolves still couldn’t break out of their slump. They held a 10-point lead at one stage before eventually falling 105-100 in to the Hawks.
Finishing the power rankings week against an elite Toronto Raptors team on the back end of a back-to-back was never going to be an easy task, and despite leading for majority of the game the Timberwolves looked gassed to finish the game. They lost, 109-104, to cap off a bitter week.
Let’s take a look at who helped keep the ship afloat and who was culpable for sinking it.
*All players must play 15 total minutes to qualify. Season and weekly stats provided by NBA.com*