Shorthanded Timberwolves reportedly adding Chris Silva and Rayjon Tucker

Forward Chris Silva is joining the Minnesota Timberwolves. Mandatory Credit: Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports
Forward Chris Silva is joining the Minnesota Timberwolves. Mandatory Credit: Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports /

The shorthanded Minnesota Timberwolves are reportedly adding a pair of players with NBA experience to the active roster on Tuesday.

The Timberwolves will be shorthanded against the Dallas Mavericks

The Timberwolves will play on Tuesday night against the Dallas Mavericks without at least five players, including three starters. The quartet of Anthony Edwards, Jarred Vanderbilt, Patrick Beverley, Taurean Prince, and Josh Okogie is all listed as out due to health and safety protocols.

In response, the Wolves have called up both of their two-way players, guard McKinley Wright IV and big man Nathan Knight, the latter of whom has spent most of the season with the Timberwolves while the former has only appeared in one NBA game to date.

Knight has played in 12 games this year with the Timberwolves after appearing in 33 games last season while on a two-way deal with the Atlanta Hawks. He’s only played in one game with the Iowa Wolves, although he was preparing to play with the team in Las Vegas this week before he was sent to meet the Timberwolves in Dallas upon news of the team’s COVID outbreak.

Shorthanded Timberwolves reportedly adding Chris Silva and Rayjon Tucker

While both Knight and Wright were on two-way deals and simply needed to be brought up from Iowa, the NBA is allowing teams to sign players to 10-day deals via the hardship exemption due to the sudden COVID-19 issues cropping up league-wide.

The first reported addition was Chris Silva, who has started 12 games for the Iowa Wolves this year, averaging 15.1 points and 9.8 rebounds per game. He played in a total of 59 NBA games over the last two seasons between the Miami Heat and Sacramento Kings after going undrafted out of the University of South Carolina.

There are some similarities between his game and that of Jarred Vanderbilt. While Silva is built a bit more to play down low and lacks some of the lateral quickness and perimeter coverage ability that Vanderbilt has, he’s a fantastic rebounder and strong shot-blocker — two elements of Vanderbilt’s game that the Wolves will miss with him sidelined.

Silva was also with the Wolves in training camp, so the staff has some additional familiarity with him.

Later in the evening, Shams Charania and Jon Krawzcynski of The Athletic reported that the Wolves would also be adding Rayjon Tucker, who has been playing for the Wisconsin Herd of the G League.

Tucker is a combo guard who spent 2019-20 with the Utah Jazz and most of last season on a two-way deal with the Philadelphia 76ers. He joined the Milwaukee Bucks on an Exhibit 10 deal earlier this year and has been playing well for their G League affiliate.

In 13 games with the Herd, Tucker has put up 17.1 points per game on 43.8 percent shooting. He’s only shooting 30.2 percent on 3-point attempts, and across 47 career G League games Tucker is only 32.7 percent from deep. At the NBA level, he’s averaged 2.8 points in 6.7 minutes per game over 34 contests while shooting 47.5 percent from the field and 20.8 percent from deep.

It would be a mild surprise if Tucker plays much, if at all, but will provide depth for head coach Chris Finch.

Expect Jaylen Nowell and Nathan Knight to soak up minutes vacated by Edwards and Vanderbilt, and Jordan McLaughlin will likely get an opportunity with Beverley sidelined. Depending on matchups and Knight’s performance, Silva could very well get some run as well.

Next. An ode to Jarred Vanderbilt's skill set. dark

The Mavericks are also dealing with COVID and injury issues, so Tuesday night’s game in Dallas could be an interesting one, to say the least.