Any Positives from Minnesota’s Pitiful 1st Half?


There were plenty of reasons to be optimistic about the Minnesota Timberwolves’ perspective future heading into the 2020-2021 season. This was supposed to be the year Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell finally meshed together and became the dynamic duo the franchise has been yearning for. Enter the No. 1 pick, Anthony Edwards, as well as other promising pieces, and this season was supposed to be different.

Instead, everything has seemingly spiraled into an apocalyptic frenzy.

Minnesota finished their first half with an uninspiring 7-29 record, good for the worst in the NBA. Regardless of what anyone’s expectations were, it was hard to picture something like this unfolding. Almost nothing has come to fruition and there haven’t been many positives to build on. To top it all off, Ryan Saunders was relieved of his head-coaching duties right before the all-star break. It appears another all-too-familiar fresh start is underway in Minneapolis.

Injuries to Towns and Russell surely haven’t helped speed the process up. Neither has Malik Beasley‘s suspension. Whether you want to blame the issues on this team’s failure to get its core quality minutes together or not, there has always seemed to be some sort of plaguing excuse. Great organizations are able to find ways to win regardless of what is thrown their way.

This team simply has not.

Light at the End of the Tunnel?

Tom Pollack once said, “it’s never as good as it looks and it’s never as bad as it seems.” This quote does hold some weight in this instance. Despite an absolutely atrocious first half, there are some positives we have learned throughout the course:

  • KAT is still one of the best all-around offensive big men the league has seen in recent years. His name often gets glossed over because of the otherwise dysfunction in Minnesota, but make no mistake, his presence is felt across the league.
  • Beasley is the real deal. His shooting and scoring will always be an asset to this team. His impact is enhanced when he shares the floor with playmakers.
  • Edwards and Jaden McDaniels have both shown electric flashes in their rookie years. Consistency will continue to dictate their overall effectiveness moving forward.

The addition of new head coach Chris Finch is definitely something to monitor. He was likely the one who benefitted most from the midseason break. Now that he’s had a chance to get settled in, we will get a better idea of how different things look with a new captain at the helm. There will be adjustments in schematics and rotations, so that is something to keep an eye on.

Regardless of the circumstances, this has still been another underwhelming season by all accounts. A clear focus and level of stability would do this franchise wonders. It’s up to organization as a whole to flip the narrative of this team and bring about a positive change.

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About Reid Roelofs

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