Because Target was founded in Minneapolis in 1902 you see!
After dropping Friday night’s game in Milwaukee against a Bucks team that has been one of the league’s most disappointing teams this year, Dallas looks to bounce back and safe to say dropping a second consecutive against a 12-25 Timberwolves team would be a big negatory.
Oddly enough, 13 games under .500 already almost halfway through the season only pits the Timberwolves four games back of the final Western Conference Playoffs spot. Will they make it? Of course not. Just a little crazy perspective for a team that also has the fifth-worst record in the Association.
The Timberwolves won the NBA Draft Lottery last May and selected Karl-Anthony Towns first overall. After acquiring 2014’s top pick Andrew Wiggins from the Cavaliers in the Kevin Love trade, they now boast two of the league’s best young players and pretty safe bets to become superstars.
The record doesn’t reflect the change in Minnesota’s landscape, but actual young talent to build around is a nice change of pace from years prior where the core was entrusted to the likes of Ricky Rubio, Jonny Flynn, Wesley Johnson and Derrick Williams.
There’s actually hope in Minnesota. And it’s come through the Draft.
The opposite is going on here in Dallas for our Mavericks. The Draft hasn’t been a factor in many years and aside from night to night hardcore fandom, I’m not remotely sure what exactly it is that we’re hoping for. The second round?
If you ain’t first, you’re last.
Minnesota has embraced this, and while a 12-25 record isn’t something any franchise wants to sports beyond a very short window, the Mavericks are overachieving at 21-16. Overachieving.
As for the matchup at hand, the Mavericks should come in focused after an awful showing in Milwaukee. They tied an NBA season-high in three pointers attempted with 44, making just 14 (31.8%) and distinguished themselves alone by taking 26 of them in just the first half, hitting only 6 (23%).
Because it’s the Bucks, the Mavs still had a very, very good shot to win by Deron Williams but fell 96-95. They look to bounce back and in such a scenario the Timberwolves are a good team to be squaring off against.
After winning an NBA championship in 2011, Mavericks fan favorite J.J. Barea signed a 4-year, $19 million dollar contract with the Timberwolves. He became a target for a lot of hate from Wolves fans, expecting him to magically become something more than he was because of his recent winnings and his contract.
Barea was bought out before the fourth season in that deal and I’m sure T-Wolves fans will welcome him with open arms, especially coming off the best stretch of his career, when he averaged 22.3 points and 6.8 assists from 12/23-12/30. Maybe not.
National Football League
Sunday’s Mavericks-Timberwolves game was moved from 2:30 to 4 P.M. so Minnesota fans could watch the Vikings, who host the Seattle Seahawks in the NFL Wild Card Playoffs at noon.
Mavericks: Deron Williams (elbow) Game Time Decision
Mavericks: Dirk Nowitzki, 17.4
Timberwolves: Andrew Wiggins, 20.6
Mavericks: Zaza Pachulia, 10.8 (Tie-5th in NBA)
Timberwolves: Karl-Anthony Towns, 9.4
Mavericks: Deron Williams, 5.6
Timberwolves: Ricky Rubio, 8.9 (5th in NBA)
Mavericks: Deron Williams, Zaza Pachulia & Devin Harris, 1.1
Timberwolves: Ricky Rubio, 2.3 (Tie-2nd in NBA)
Mavericks: JaVale McGee, 0.8
Timberwolves: Karl-Anthony Towns, 1.8
How to Watch: 4:00 PM CST on Fox Sports Southwest