GH And Petey's Timberwolves Blog

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Wolves notes and the hell that is my life

I'll start off with the Wolves notes, since that's why most of you come here. I don't normally talk too much about myself on here, but I know some of you might be interested to learn more about me and this seems like a good time, as I might be able to elicit some sympathy from some of you.

Wolves Notes

The home game the other night against showed some very positive signs. After a disheartening loss in LA, we took a Clippers team that's been playing strongly to the rack at home. In particular, the stretch in the 3rd/4th quarter where the Wolves took control of the game showed some very promising signs.

Normally, KG gets taken out of the game near the end of the third quarter and gets rested for a while, however, in this game Casey decided to leave him in there. This is the kind of thing I rarely (sometimes in the playoffs, but I don't think ever in the regular season) saw Flip do. However, I think this was a very good and intuitive decision by Casey and I hope he continues to make in game coaching decisions based on the flow of the game, rather than on a predetermined formula. There are several reasons I liked this decision.

1. The Wolves were playing really well together

This is the first time I've really seen this from the Wolves this season. I mentioned that in the beginning of the Portland game, it really looked like they were working to get a good shot. But this time was a little bit different. This went beyond just some sort of system. Watching the Wolves, you got the impression that they were starting to get a feel for how what the others on the court were thinking. It was good to let the Wolves stay out there and continue to gel--to really get a feel for one another.

2. The Wolves have struggled during that period in previous games

In both the Seattle game and the Clippers game at LA, we had taken the lead, only to see it squandered when KG sat on the bench. We didn't want to do that again and risk another collapse. Leaving KG in there could help us maintain the lead, and hopefully push it to an "un-chokeable" amount.

3. You can always rest KG later

In terms of minimizing KG's minutes, you can actually probably get him more rest on average this way. His absolute in-game rest minutes might be somewhat fewer, but if your primary concern is keeping him strong for the long haul, this isn't a bad way to go. The reason is that if the Wolves are able to continue pushing the lead, it can become insurmountable and KG can ride the pine for the last 6 minutes of the game or so. If you take him out earlier, he's gonna need to come back in anyway. This way, you can potentially give him a few extra minutes. As it turned out, the Wolves started to struggle a little bit without him in there and he needed to come back in, but at least we still had a rather large lead at that point and were able to easily secure the victory.

The Hell that is my life

I've mentioned on here before (I think) that I'm currently a grad student at the University of Minnesota in Computer Science. I had originally been in the PhD program, but last year I decided to quit after a masters and switch to a math program. Had I been more on the ball, I could have easily finished last year, but I opted instead to take my sweet time.

As a result, I don't have much left to finish up this term. I need two classes and I could have finished it up this term, but most math programs don't allow mid-year applications, so instead, I'm taking one CS course each term, and two math courses. My original plan was to take two of the year-long math sequences that normally constitute the first year of the PhD math program at the U. Unfortunately, I realized 2 days into the term that this was going to be too much work. In addition to two PhD level math courses, I would be taking a difficult CS course, working half time, looking at grad schools, preparing for the GRE, and trying to find time to blog and watch basketball. I then decided to drop one of the math courses and pick up "only" a masters level math course.

Well, that decision turned out to be a great one, but I still feel I may have overextended myself somewhat academically. Here's what my schedule is like right now:

Last Thursday: Give an all-day seminar on a system I developed
Monday: One (very hard) assignment due
Today: Two assignments (one hard, one easier) due
Friday: Test
Saturday: Math Subject GRE
Next Monday: One (very hard) assignment due
Next Wednesday: One test and one (easier) assignment due

In a week I might be able to catch my breath a little bit (but not really). I'm planning on chilling most of the night tonight and watching basketball, but I'll have to throw a little bit of studying in there at some point.

So now, if any of my ramblings seem incoherent, you know why.

Another Pick

As I suggested might happen:

Utah(ML) over NJ ($20/$54)