Minnesota Timberwolves: A tolerable loss against Hayward’s Boston Celtics

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 07: Derrick Rose #25 of the Minnesota Timberwolves. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 07: Derrick Rose #25 of the Minnesota Timberwolves. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /

As the Minnesota Timberwolves’ four game winning streak ended on Saturday night at the Target Center, a three game winning streak began for the Boston Celtics.

Before we delve too deep into this 118-109 loss against the Boston Celtics, it’s important to note how fluid the Minnesota Timberwolves look (internally and externally) only a few weeks after trading away 4-time All-Star Jimmy Butler.

While most NBA teams would struggle after trading their best player, the Wolves’ look refreshed and ready to start the post season. However, they’re only a bit over a quarter into the regular season, and yet, there is a unspoken hustle embodied into this team.

The unabashedly confident Timberwolves’ team isn’t just a random coincidence, there are a few components that have led to the creation of this ecstatic team.

Ranging from the defensive prowess of newly acquired Robert Covington who had 17 points (4-11), 10 rebounds, and 4 steals. Or even the new resurgence of Derrick Rose who had 26 points (11-18) in 29 minutes.

There are multiple factors that have lead to the new persona of this Wolves’ roster, that this loss to the Boston Celtics isn’t one to dwell on.

However, we still need to run through the specifics on how and why the Celtics finished as the objectively better team.

Lets start with a positive:

Highlight of the Night

Derrick Rose coming off the bench seems more and more like a bad idea for the average fan. But, there is something to leading the bench when there isn’t anyone else to do that job, see Lou Williams for the Los Angeles Clippers.

To be frank, Derrick Rose needs to keep faking and floating in these beauties off the bench because the Wolves’ and head coach Tom Thibodeau don’t have any tangible scoring threats on the sidelines.

Unless, of course, a possible Josh Okogie and Anthony Tolliver mix off the bench could get the team going in the right direction? It may be doable in the foreseeable future. But for now, Rose in his sixth man role is the right fit.

Gosh that fake was pretty.

Players of the Game

Derrick Rose and Robert Covington are the players of the game (which is becoming a tendency for better or worse).

Covington and Rose combined for 43 points, shooting 53.3 percent from the field (16-30), and 40 percent from downtown (4-10).

And while the “real” two best players on this team in Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins pulled out solid games (Towns more-so than Wiggs), it would still have been Rose and Covington who would’ve undeniably saved the day if the Wolves ended up winning.

Notable Timberwolves Box Score Lines


  • Derrick Rose 29 minutes – 26 points (11-18 FG, 2-3 3P, 2-2 FT), 4 assists, 3 turnovers.
  • Robert Covington 38 minutes – 17 points (4-11 FG, 2-7 3P, 7-7 FT), 10 rebounds, and 4 steals.
  • Karl-Anthony Towns 38 minutes – 20 points (6-15 FG, 2-6 3P, 6-6 FT), 9 rebounds, 1 steal and 1 block.
  • Andrew Wiggins 33 minutes – 17 points (5-12 FG, 2-5 3P, 5-6 FT), 3 assists.


  • Jeff Teague 33 minutes – 11 points (3-10 FG, 1-2 3P, 4-4 FT), 6 assists, 4 rebounds, 5 turnovers.
  • Tyus Jones 15 minutes – 0 points (0-1 FG, 0-1 3P), 2 assists, 1 rebound.

The most glaring problem that this lineup has is their inconsistency at the point guard position, and that on-going issue seems to be the only consistent quality regarding guards Jeff Teague and Tyus Jones.

And while I could easily play devils advocate and argue that Teague didn’t do a terrible job because he delivered a well rounded stat sheet, at times he becomes invisible on the floor, and that’s difficult to do when your orchestrating the offense (or supposed to be).

As for Tyus Jones, I’ve sailed off his island long ago. But yet the plus/minus gods have kept him in this lineup to get his empty 15 minutes per game to give us a few fun games of some steals and solid off the ball movement – which I can do without for the right price via a trade (hello, Phoenix?).

dark. Next. The Timberwolves are the most undervalued team in the NBA

Conclusion of the loss

Don’t take this loss too hard.

The Celtics are finally finding their groove after a rocky quarter to their first season with a healthy Gordon Hayward lineup, and you can’t help but be happy for the guy who scored a career high in a Celtics jersey to go along with a full stat sheet (30 points, 9 rebounds, and 8 assists).

That ankle seems to be more sturdy than ever (knock on wood).

The Wolves’ are currently 11-12 which is tied for 10th in the West and you can expect them to sit around the 6th-12th seed for the next few months as they wait to grab a playoff spot down the road.

The Wolves’ have won seven of their last 10 games and will be looking for revenge against a rocky Houston Rockets team on Monday night, tune in for the James Harden showdown.