Can Minnesota Timberwolves throw some Pistons in the rematch?

Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports /
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The victory-starved Minnesota Timberwolves ended 2022 on a downslide. The team ended with a six-game losing streak, topped with the final game of the season in an embarrassing loss to the Detroit Pistons (10-29) by a score of 116-104. Perhaps the most painful part of that sixth consecutive loss is the fact that the Timberwolves blew a 14-point halftime lead.

The performance of the Timberwolves roster was very forgettable, as the team was bested by the lowly Pistons in all aspects of the game. Whether it was perimeter shooting, points in the paint, rebounding, assists, fast break points, or turnovers, the Pistons had the edge in the final tally. The game was so disappointing that the Timberwolves held a players-only meeting after the game.

At the time that game ended, the Minnesota Timberwolves’ record had fallen to 16-21. The Pistons climbed to 10-29.

Pistons provided Timberwolves’ seasonal nadir

Since that game, the Minnesota Timberwolves have been a completely different team, winning all four games in the calendar year 2023 so far to climb back to a record of 20-21. On the other hand, the Detroit Pistons have emerged from that contest to go 1-3, now with a record of 11-32.  But the Pistons are currently playing the Philadelphia 76ers  on Tuesday Night, January 10, 2023, for the second time in the past three days, and are behind in that one by nearly 20 points, by a score of 50-32, with under four minutes to go in the first half.

The Pistons return home to host the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday Night, January 11, 2023, for the third game this week, in a back-to-back scenario that favors the rested Minnesota Timberwolves.

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The problem is, can the Timberwolves throw a few pistons and blow Detroit’s engine in the rematch? I think it can happen, and here are three factors for that belief: