GH And Petey's Timberwolves Blog

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Kevin Garnett: Just Give Me the Damn Gumball!

So we played pretty well but still managed to lose. I had mixed feelings about it. I was hoping for a win (obviously), but was glad to see the Wolves not come out flat.

I don't have anything in particular to say, so when in doubt, just steal good material.

SBG made a nice post earlier today with some interesting observations about the Wolves thus far. Rather than just giving a response there, I'll provide something a bit lengthier here.

The main point of the post was that some people on the Wolves (McCants) were shooting too much. Meanwhile, certain other Timberwolves (Garnett) weren't shooting enough. At the same time, Garnett is shooting a monsterous 57.5% from the floor this season, while McCants is shooting an uninspired 40.4% from the field.

The first observation to be made about this material is one that seems obvious once it's pointed out to you.

The more frequently you shoot, the lower your efficiency will be.

That's right. When your restrict yourself to better shots, you will shoot better. If you shoot too much, you will be forced to take worse shots and won't be as efficient. T-Wolves fans should be pissed at how well Garnett is shooting. We don't want him to shoot that well!

It's not that we're opposed to his amazing shooting; it's just a matter that he's not taking enough shots. If KG starts taking 20 shots per game as opposed to the 15 he's taken so far this season, his shooting percentage will go down. However, that's perfectly fine since the average number of points scored on those extra shots will be higher than anything else we can get on our team.

The reason McCants is shooting so much right now is because he's a rookie who's eager to prove to everyone just how amazing he is. He's gonna be a star in this league. He's gonna be rookie of the year. He's gonna show everyone what he can do. Well, at least in his own mind.

At some point, he will realize (or have it pointed out to him) that he's probably not as good as he thinks. I think he'll turn out to be a very solid NBA player, but he's probably not going to be a superstar, and he certainly won't be this year. A big part of his adjustment to the NBA is going to be to adjust to this fact. He's been hot shit all of his life and has never had to slow down. He drives and scores and that's all he's needed to do. Now, he's going to need to learn to adjust to his role on the team, which will mean giving up the ball a lot of the time.

The other issue which SBG discusses was that of KG's lack of rebounding this season and the fact that he seems less involved this season. While I'm as perplexed as the next guy about this, I can offer a theory.

Many Wolves fans may be surprised to learn that despite KG's lack of rebounding the Wolves are actually the top ranked defensive team in the NBA. With a new coach come new systems--both offensive and defensive. Now, to be honest, I'm not any sort of expert on defense (just ask Petey about how good my D is!) and it's not a part of the game I pay terribly close attention to. But one thought might be that Casey is implementing a defensive system that pulls KG outside more often and keeps him away from the basket.

Starting tomorrow night, I'm going to start keeping a closer eye on KG's defensive positioning. Of course, it could also just be that the ball has been bouncing away from him. Not even the best rebounders can get the ball if it's on the other side of the court.

As for KG's seeming lack of activity on the court, this could very well just be an illusion caused by him not getting as many rebounds as he normally does and not taking as many shots. He's still putting up over 21 points and 5 assists per game! I'm guessing that we have nothing to worry about.

Today's bets

I'm a little bit late putting this up because I've been at work all day and haven't had a chance to post. I'm going against my boys today, which is hard for me to do. On the plus side, I'll either win my bet or we'll get a Wolves win (or both), so I've got that going for me. C'mon Wolves by 4!

Wizards(+5) at Wolves ($22/$20)
Spurs(-8) vs. Rockets($22/$20)
Atlanta/Dallas Under 195.5 ($22/$20)