The 2023 NBA Finals will begin tomorrow night when the Nuggets take on the Heat in Game 1 in Denver. The Minnesota Timberwolves’ season may have ended more than a month ago, but there is still reason for Wolves fans to be tuning in.
Both playing for the Miami Heat, Jimmy Butler and Kevin Love are the only two players in the Finals to have suited up for Minnesota at any point in their NBA careers. Long time Timberwolves fans undoubtedly recall watching the two compete in the Twin Cities.
Love and Butler both earned All-Star appearances during their respective time in Minnesota. Both left their own unique mark on the organization, and Butler helped the team get back to the playoffs after a 14-year drought. But the fact that neither are still playing for the Timberwolves certainly leaves some fans with mixed feelings for the two.
Who should Minnesota Timberwolves fans be rooting for in the NBA Finals?
Many fans in Minnesota will probably find it hard to cheer for any team besides their own in the Finals. It can be difficult to see Jimmy Butler dominating and Kevin Love making meaningful contributions in the playoffs while knowing that they could be doing those things in a Timberwolves uniform.
But on the flip side, it has been long enough since both of them were in Minnesota that harsh feelings may have passed, and some may find it easier to cheer for them. After all, Wolves fans still remember the positive memories they helped create in Timberwolves uniforms, and there is something of a residual joy that comes from seeing them perform well in the present day.
One thing is for sure: Butler and Love’s team will be huge underdogs heading into this series. The Heat are just the second eighth-seeded team to ever make the Finals, and they will need another incredible performance to continue their historic run against the Nuggets. Hopefully, they will have many Minnesota Timberwolves fans rooting them on.
Game 1 will tip off Thursday, June 1 at 7:30 PM CT on ABC.