This Wolves big froze the Heat and willed team to win off the bench

Chris Finch, Minnesota Timberwolves (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Chris Finch, Minnesota Timberwolves (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
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Minnesota Timberwolves, Mike Conley Jr., Anthony Edwards Timberwolves News, Naz Reid
Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports /

What about the other Wolves?

The NBA is never just about one player, as the Minnesota Timberwolves know full well, and this game was about the Timberwolves playing together like a solid team. Despite the Timberwolves trailing the Heat on fast-break points, 22 to 12, the Wolves won almost all categories that seemed to alarmingly backslide in their season opener in Toronto.

The Timberwolves showed good ball movement (30 assists), great rebounding (47), and a better defensive presence, particularly at the perimeter where the Heat marksmen would only score on 12 of 39 attempted three-point shots.

The Timberwolves backcourt starters of PG Mike Conley Jr. and Anthony Edwards had a great night, combining for 33 points, 12 assists, six rebounds, and one steal. They also combined to shoot 13 of 25 field goals, and 5 of 11 from three-point range.

Gobert is getting bigger on Timberwolves’ roster

One of the best performances in this game was that of center Rudy Gobert, who recorded his second consecutive Double-Double in just two games. He scored 14 points and hauled in 14 points. He even earned an assist as well as a steal:

Gobert truly resembles prime-time Utah Jazz All-Pro center Rudy Gobert, a feat that the Timberwolves roster truly needs to find success this season. So far, Gobert is averaging:

•14.5 PPG  • 14.5 RPG  • 2 BLKS  • 67.0  FG%

That’s great news for the Timberwolves. But it’s bad news for the rest of the NBA

It’s clear that a Timberwolves lineup led by veteran Mike Conley Jr. is a much better situation for the Timberwolves big man. But he also has the opportunity to mentor one of the up-and-coming stars of the NBA as well.