Player grades from Minnesota Timberwolves’ home loss to Pacers

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - JANUARY 15: Jeremy Lamb #26 of the Indiana Pacers shoots the ball against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Copyright 2020 NBAE (Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - JANUARY 15: Jeremy Lamb #26 of the Indiana Pacers shoots the ball against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Copyright 2020 NBAE (Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images) /

On Wednesday the Minnesota Timberwolves lost their third consecutive game, dropping the first half of a home-and-home series with the Indiana Pacers.

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For a brief period of time on Wednesday, there appeared to be a chance that the Minnesota Timberwolves might get Karl-Anthony Towns back from injury/illness and that the Indiana Pacers might be without top big man Domantas Sabonis.

Alas, Towns sat out once again and Sabonis played and dominated. Consequently, the Wolves lost their third consecutive game, dropping their season record to 15-25.

Sabonis, who tied his season-high with 29 points, dropped 25 in the first half and was the only reason the Pacers stayed in the game prior to halftime. After the break, the game was controlled by Malolm Brogdon and the Pacers’ steady mid-range attack.

To make matters worst, the Wolves shot just 5-of-26 from the field in the third quarter. That’s 19.2 percent, if you’re scoring from home.

Minnesota struggled to get anything going offensively but still managed to hang around for the entirety of the second half, even pushing back on a deficit that hovered near double-digits for much of the final frame. The Wolves were within two possessions for much of the final minutes but were unable to get any closer.

Most of the Wolves’ roster simply did not appear to be in sync in this game, with only Jarrett Culver, Keita Bates-Diop and Robert Covington providing consistent effort on both ends of the floor.

Player Grades

Wing. Minnesota Timberwolves. ANDREW WIGGINS. D. We’re now at three straight games of major struggles for Andrew Wiggins. It was the second consecutive night in which Wiggins scored just 10 points, this time shooting only 4-of-13 from the field. He had three rebounds and three assists in 32 minutes and continued to miss a bevy of attempts in the paint. It’s obviously not what the Wolves needed from him with Karl-Anthony Towns out of the lineup for the past month.

Minnesota Timberwolves. ROBERT COVINGTON. B+. Robert Covington was good once again. Offensively, he was hot in the first half but cooled off considerably, finishing with 14 points (5-12 FG, 4-8 3P, 0-1 FT), seven rebounds, two steals, and a block in 31 minutes. He was great on defense throughout the affair, coming up with loose balls, deflections, and jump balls on multiple occasions.. Forward

JARRETT CULVER. B. Jarrett Culver continues to impress with his efficiency, putting up 17 points (8-13 FG, 1-2 3P), five rebounds, two steals, one assist and only one turnover in 31 minutes. He also had a plus-minus mark of +2, the only member of the starting lineup to end up on the positive side of the ledger. There were a couple of bad misses at the rim for Culver, which only makes his shooting percentage on the night that much more impressive, along with his growing ability to get to the rim whenever he wants.. Guard. Minnesota Timberwolves

C-. Shabazz Napier was not as aggressive as he has been lately, attempting only five shots from the field, making one. He finished with four points and nine assists with four turnovers in 29 minutes. The offense was simply not smooth all the way around, and Napier was at the forefront of the issues.. Guard. Minnesota Timberwolves. SHABAZZ NAPIER

B-. Gorgui Dieng had a weird game. His final line of 15 points, 11 rebounds, three assists and a block looks nice, but he was just 7-of-15 from the field and 0-for-3 from 3-point range. Dieng turned down a couple of open threes in the second half, perhaps as a result of some of his early struggles from the field. He also struggled defensively to slow down Sabonis and Co.. Center. Minnesota Timberwolves. GORGUI DIENG

A-. Keita Bates-Diop provided a nice boost of the bench for the Wolves, especially in the middle stages of the game. He ultimately had 15 points (4-10 FG, 2-3 3P, 5-5 FT), six rebounds, three assists and a block with zero turnovers. It was good to see Bates-Diop active once again on both ends of the floor and in transition after a period of much quieter games.. Forward. Minnesota Timberwolves. KEITA BATES-DIOP

Other Players

Jeff Teague had nine points and 3-of-6 shooting and five assists with a block and a rebound and only one turnover. He was somewhat of a steady hand in this one in only 19 minutes and probably deserved to play a bit more than that given Napier’s struggles.

Josh Okogie led the Wolves with 22 minutes off the bench but only mustered two points, coming on an impressive baseline drive and dunk. He was quiet otherwise, however.

Noah Vonleh had six points and five rebounds off the bench but struggled in the paint, missing a couple of easy shots around the rim. Naz Reid only played eight minutes in the game following his career-high, 20-point performance against Oklahoma City, but that was more due to a tough matchup against the Pacers than anything else.

Next. Shabazz Napier's contract is a steal for the Wolves. dark

Up Next

The Wolves head to Indianapolis to take on this same Pacers team on Friday evening at 6 p.m. CT.