— Basketball president David Kahn on rebuilding the Timberwolves: “Who we are this month isn’t necessarily what we’ll be a month from now or two months from now or a year from now.”
He has said he prefers other options at shooting guard, namely Corey Brewer and rookie Wayne Ellington. But here might be the real reason: He’s trying to groom Flynn at point guard and apparently doesn’t want him picking up bad habits.
“I want Jonny to try and be a point guard,” Rambis said of Flynn, who has been more efficient scoring (14.3 points per game entering Monday’s 146-105 loss) than distributing the ball (3.1 assists per game). “He’s a more natural scorer than Ramon is, so now I’m telling him to go from the point guard position to a position where his mindset is to score. I’m not sure how that would affect things.
Jawai, who is 6 feet 10, 280 pounds, showed a nice shooting touch. He also matched up well against Portland center Greg Oden and set a series of workable screens on offense.
His work ethic and quick assimilation with the Wolves’ ball-moving system have earned praise.
“He has impressed the entire coaching staff from Day 1,” said coach Kurt Rambis. “He has a very high basketball IQ. He’s very light on his feet. He can move well. He understands the game. It’s just a matter of him getting some time on the floor to understand what we expect of him offensively and defensively.”
For the moment, Love is just trying to maintain his conditioning and not lose all the hard work he put in during the summer. He entered training camp in the best shape of his career and was curious to see how his new body would fare during the regular season.
“I was in very good shape. It was a rare occasion that I was dead tired in a game,” Love said. “We did all sorts of sprints and I usually finished first among the bigs most of the time. My body just felt great.”
But here’s something Rambis mentioned before the game that might be more the real reason: He says he’s trying to teach Flynn to play point guard the right way and if you put Sessions and Flynn out there together, Flynn is the more natural scorer of the two.
The implication is he doesn’t want Flynn to develop bad habits — think score first — by playing him with Sessions, although you could say he’s mostly been a scorer first (14.2 ppg average, just 22 assists now in 7 games) his assist totals (22 in 7 games) anyway while Rambis is trying to teach him how to play the point guard spot.
Flynn is sharing time with newly acquired Ramon Sessions, whose departure from Milwaukee created playing time for Jennings. So, although Flynn is having a fine start to his professional career, Jennings (backed up by Luke Ridnour) has a more impressive early list of responsibilities.