The Minnesota Timberwolves are just emerging from the roughest stretch of their entire season. After falling in disastrous fashion to the Detroit Pistons on New Years Eve, they had lost six games in a row, and their ugly losing streak was finally ended Monday night against the Nuggets.
Leading up to the win against Denver, Austin Rivers pointed out that there is still over half the season remaining to right the ship. The Timberwolves certainly took a step forward in improving their situation by taking down the top team in the conference.
However, this group is still in a tough spot, and problems are still lingering. After the loss to the Pistons, Naz Reid made comments about the team that were more than a little unsettling to hear.
Naz Reid spoke about the state of the Timberwolves following Pistons loss
When asked if it was a mystery why the Timberwolves are underachieving after the Detroit loss, Reid said the following: “Not really. We know. We know. We know why. And you know, I’m gonna kind of keep that in house. But we know why.”
Now, there are several explanations for what Naz Reid could be talking about. But it seems that the most likely one involves the elephant in the room: Rudy Gobert.
Overall, it is no mystery that Gobert’s play this season has not been quite what Minnesota expected after trading four first-round picks for him. While he has been far from awful, he has not yet been able to be the game-changer that Tim Connelly envisioned.
Naz Reid said what every Timberwolves fan was thinking
As a result, he is the quickest and easiest factor to point to when the Timberwolves’ struggles this season are brought into question. Injuries and other difficulties have no doubt been at play here as well, but the fact that Minnesota moved so many important pieces from last year’s roster and put all their stock into Gobert means that many of their shortcomings will fall on his shoulders in the eyes of the fanbase, whether they should or not.
To hear Reid publicly hint at this is certainly concerning. When his comment went public, it felt like a moment where everyone involved could tell what was being expressed, even without it being said directly.
To be clear, it is good that the Timberwolves are self-aware enough to know that their personnel inconsistencies from last year are giving them trouble. But it is disturbing that everyone seems to be increasingly aware of how big a mistake they may have made.