GH And Petey's Timberwolves Blog

Monday, January 17, 2005

Are You Kidding Me?

The Raptors had lost 11 in a row on the road. They had never who in Target center. That is, until tonight.

I was pumped at the beginning of the game. We had won two straight, and watching them out there for the first 5 minutes, they looked like a different team than I had been watching all season. Of course, they sort of were a different team. Their starting 5 consisted of Carter/Hassell/Sprewell/Garnett/Thomas is a completely different look than Wolves fans have been used to seeing. For the first five minutes or so, they looked like a team inspired to win, and they were playing very strong D. Sure, they missed a few easy shots, but if they kept playing like this, they would inevitably win by 20.

Of course, as soon as I start noticing this, something bad happened. I'm not exactly sure what it was, but all of a sudden everything seemed to go wrong. The Raptors made everything. It wasn't entirely the Wolves fault--but it wasn't entirely not their fault either. The Raptors made a few tough 3s with a hand in their face, but they were also getting a bunch of easy ones.

The Wolves real problem, however, seemed to be on offense. There was no flow whatsoever. They weren't even trying to get to the basket. They'd just run around and eventually take a mid- to long-range jumper. This would be a good time to introduce what I would like to call "The fundamental theorem of basketball".
It is easier to score when you're closer to the basket.
It's intuitive I know, but from time to time it seems like the Wolves forget this. The 3-point shot throws a bit of a wrench into the theorem, but the general idea still holds. If you're taking a lot of shots from close to the basket, and preventing your opponents from getting shots close to the basket, you'll win a lot more than you lose.

For an extended period during the first half, it appeared that the Wolves had been replaced by evil zombie Timberwolves. They were just running around on the court and eventually launching a shot miles away from the basket. Especially THud. He's the zombie king.

The second half (and the end of the first half) was a bit of a different story. The Wolves played much better and Toronto much worse. I don't think I've ever seen a team miss so many shots so horribly as Toronto did in the second half of this game. Each time they put up one of those shots I kept thinking "I can't believe we're going to lose to this team".

Unfortunately, despite their return from suckitude, the Wolves had a few things going against them. First, they had to overcome an 18-point deficit. Second, KG was in foul trouble and had to sit for a good portion of the second half. Third, the Wolves received about 4 absolutely awful calls during the 3rd quarter (none which lead to KG's foul trouble however). Donyell Marshall, at .350 3-point shooter, went 6-8 from three point range.

In the end, it was all just too much. I hardly know what to think now (again). On the one hand, the Wolves had to have just about everything go wrong in order to lose to the Raptors. On the other hand, we lost to the Raptors.

All I ask is: No more evil zombie Timberwolves.

Then we'll be fine.

Tomorrow: A personal anecdote and what Eddie G should be doing (and not doing).