Wolves 100, Raptors 106 (3.23.10)

Does Rambis Know We Can Stop Now?


I only watched the second half of the game since my DVR was working overdrive tonight (so sue me.)  What happened?  It was close and then POW, we = dead.  Yeah yeah, I know, we “came back” towards the end… but let’s not kid ourselves here.  There’s like a 0.000001% chance that we don’t end up with the second worst record in the entire league.  This tanking is getting ridiculous.  I mean, we’ve lost 19 out of our last 20 games!  We need to switch it up and get Stern off our back, maybe win a game or three at some point in the second half of the season?

And if Rambis/Kahn aren’t tanking… then god help us all.

News, Notes, and Daily Links (3.23.10):

From the
Star Tribune:

Even their own rims are betraying the Timberwolves now.

One point-blank missed layup is understandable, and two are unlucky. The Timberwolves missed five on Monday at Target Center, a critical lapse that allowed a rare winnable game to slip away. The Toronto Raptors capitalized by holding off a late Wolves’ rally and claim their 12th consecutive victory against Minnesota, 106-100.

Really?  Blaming the loss on the rims?  Don’t they know how bad we are?  Did the editor miss the fact that we’ve lost 19 of our last 20?  “Timberwolves” and “missed layups” are two of the most commonly linked clauses in the English language.
13 in a row!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1 From the Pioneer Press:

After Toronto’s 106-100 victory Monday night at Target Center, which stretched the Wolves’ losing streak to 13 games, Rambis didn’t try to hide his admiration for a team with “talented guards, good pick-setters and big men who can shoot.”

The combination reminded Rambis and his staff that the Wolves (14-57) still have trouble with their halfcourt defense — particularly against tall forwards or centers who would rather shoot jumpers than post up in the lane. And why not, when 6-foot-10 forwards Chris Bosh and Hedo Turkoglu and 7-foot center Andrea Bargnani can make those shots?

Also from the Strib, the Wolves-Raptors Recrap “By the Numbers:”

6 – Raptors in double figures, including four starters.

+12 – Rating for Wolves reserve point guard Ramon Sessions, highest on the team, but he only played 15 minutes.

Here’s a number for you: Suck.

JON KRAWCZYNSKI from the AP gives a halfhearted “Recap”:

Al Jefferson had 22 points and seven rebounds for the Timberwolves, who have lost 19 of their last 20 games. They trailed 94-92 with 3:29 to play, but couldn’t come up with any key stops down the stretch to end their skid.

Bosh broke his own franchise record with his 44th double-double of the season. It was also the 36th time this year he has had at least 20 points and 10 rebounds, the most in the league.

Had a little trouble finding something to highlight from that enlightening report.

Don’t Worry, Wolves still working hard says Ray Richardson from the Pioneer Press:

Before Monday night’s 106-100 loss to Toronto at Target Center, Rambis acknowledged that the players are “very frustrated,” but he’s not relaxing his demands on them or easing their routines.

“My message to the players is to continue to work hard and improve your game,” Rambis said. “We still have them lifting weights and doing the things they need to do to get better. We don’t want them to flush the season.”

Rambis is hoping the Wolves’ schedule will help them avoid complacency as the season winds down. Seven of the Wolves’ remaining 11 games are against playoff-bound teams or teams in contention. Toronto, with its win Monday, moved into a tie with Charlotte for the seventh playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Well that’s good to hear.  I thought maybe this team had given up on the season already.

The Raptors were “Lethargic” says The National Post:

Last night, that break was a road game against the woeful Minnesota Timberwolves. It was rarely pretty, but Toronto picked up a 106-100 win. That, paired with Saturday’s victory over the even-worse New Jersey Nets, puts Toronto back on the friendly side of .500.

The Raptors received the bulk of their punch from their two big men. Chris Bosh and Andrea Bargnani combined for 40 points on 16-for-30 shooting, grabbing 17 rebounds between them.

Or maybe they knew how easy it is to beat us.  Yay, free wins for everyone!

Jerry Zgoda from the Strib lets us know that the Wolves cut Alando Tucker?

Releasing Tucker leaves the Wolves with 13 players, the NBA minimum, on their roster. Minnesota faces Toronto tonight in Target Center.

Bummer.  He had four HUGE buckets for us this year.

More on Darko and his future with the Wolves from the Detroit Free Press.com:

“Yeah, I’d come back. That’s what I’m looking for,” the 7-footer said only a month after being rescued from exile on the Knicks’ bench. “Minnesota came up and they kind of trust me. They gave me a chance, and I like it.”

It’s the first time that Milicic, who had to be talked into even reporting to Minnesota after the Feb. 18 trade for Brian Cardinal, has softened his stated intention to sign with a European team this summer.

And it’s the first sign that the Timberwolves’ nothing-to-lose strategy of trading for the unused big man, giving him ample playing time and letting him warm up to the franchise might pay off.

I don’t see how we can guarantee him minutes.  It would just be setting a bad precendent…

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