Minnesota Timberwolves: Player grades for first quarter of the season

Use your ← → (arrows) to browse
Minnesota Timberwolves, Robert Covington

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – NOVEMBER 21: Robert Covington #33 of the Minnesota Timberwolves. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

The Minnesota Timberwolves are on a four-game winning streak as we pass the first quarter of the NBA regular season. The Wolves’ start the year with a roller coaster-like record of 11-11, and we have player grades for everyone responsible for that record.

The Minnesota Timberwolves‘ Head Coach and President of Basketball Operations Tom Thibodeau may have finally put a team together that actually wants to play with one another.

Since the favorable trade of Jimmy Butler to the Philadelphia 76ers, the Wolves are 7-2 and aren’t bowing down to any opponent.

During that time frame, the Wolves beat the Brooklyn Nets (twice), New Orleans Pelicans, Portland Trail Blazers, Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, and the San Antonio Spurs by a margin of 11 points per win.

And while that all seems fantastic, the Wolves still sit as the 9th seed in the Western Conference, but with only a few wins more, they could easily be a top-five seed. Which exemplifies the incredible similarities of the greatness of each team in the West.

As for the player grades throughout the first quarter of the season, it’s easy to disregard the greatness of players like Karl-Anthony Towns because of other surprising talents like Derrick Rose or Robert Covington. However, I will not let their recent stardom take away from how well Towns has played since the absence of Jimmy Butler.

Unfortunately, it’ll be more difficult to grade players like Josh Okogie or Anthony Tolliver because of Thibs 9-man rotations that he sticks to without the rookie or the veteran.

Dario Saric is also another player who will be tough to grade because he’s had less playing time than RoCo, but I will only grade their games with Minnesota and not Philly.

Furthermore, the Wolves intend on making the playoffs and these player grades actually mean something at this moment in time, it’s something for the guys to improve upon.

Teams around the Western conference are fighting for a spot in the players with 60ish games remaining in the regular season, which says a lot to the difficulties of the West.

I intend on delving deep into the whole lineup, ranging from the starters to the bench.

However, I’ll sway away from the front office/coaching staff, as we all feel a certain way about Tom Thibodeau, Scott Layden, and Glen Taylor, so it’s not necessary.

So, to start, the most fitting player to begin with seems like the more displeasing one as of late – the infamous Andrew Wiggins.

Quick note: I’m not including Anthony Tolliver or Josh Okogie, mainly because I need to see more games from both of them and can’t go off their past stints with the Wolves’ like I can with Gorgui Dieng.

Use your ← → (arrows) to browse