The Minnesota Timberwolves currently hold the worst record in the NBA. Their G League team, the Iowa Wolves, finished the regular season with the same unfortunate distinction.
Still, there can be positive takeaways from the Wolves’ time in the G League bubble. A 2-13 record notwithstanding, there were still some notable individual performances.
Remember, the Wolves currently hold both an open two-way contract spot and a vacant spot on the 15-man roster, so there’s always a chance that key G League performers could earn an NBA contract.
Tyler Cook’s breakout leads to NBA deal, but not with Timberwolves
Heading into the G League bubble, it was fair to assume that there were at least a couple of players with a leg up on a potential opportunity with the big club.
Tyler Cook spent part of the 2019-20 campaign in the NBA, on a pair of 10-day contracts with the Cleveland Cavaliers and as a two-way player with the Denver Nuggets. He appeared in 13 games as the NBA level last year.
Here’s what yours truly wrote about Cook when he was added to the Timberwolves’ training camp roster back in November:
Cook is a 6-foot-8 forward with a 7-foot wingspan. He doesn’t stretch the floor at all and has more of a bruising style in the paint although he has the athletic ability to be dynamic in transition and in the pick-and-roll game. Cook can theoretically guard multiple positions and would seem to be a solid option for a second two-way contract signee.
In three years at the University of Iowa, Cooks averaged 14.1 points and 6.7 rebounds while shooting 54.2 percent from the field.
Following training camp, the Iowa Wolves signed him and brought him to the G League bubble while the Wolves filled their two-way spots with rookie guard Ashton Hagans and second-year guard Jordan McLaughlin.
Hagans was waived shortly after the start of the G League bubble due to violating COVID-19 health and safety protocols, and the Wolves still haven’t filled their vacant two-way spot.
If they were debating using it on Cook, who was off to a sizzling start in the bubble, they didn’t act fast enough. Cook was signed to a 10-day contract by Brooklyn and has since appeared in four games for the Nets.
With the Wolves, Cook led the team in scoring and rebounding, averaging 20.8 points and 9.6 rebounds per game while shooting 59.8 percent from the field.
Unless he isn’t retained by the Nets following the expiration of his 10-day deal(s), Cook isn’t an option for the Timberwolves.