Timberwolves

Beverley Transforming T-Wolves Basketball

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When you take a look at the last decade of Timberwolves basketball, there are a few consistent themes that come to mind.

Cultural dysfunction, empty seats and long winters.

But above all else, Minnesota has struggled to sustain any kind of formidable defense. Some may blame the system. Others may claim the existing personnel isn’t capable of defending at a high level. The excuses were far and in between.

Insert Patrick Beverley. The single catalyst who transformed everything for the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Beverley has a longstanding reputation in this league for better or worse. We know he loves to run his mouth more than the average Joe, but that is just apart of his personality. If you know anything about his upbringing, he’s had to scratch and claw his way into this league.

He’s an overcomer and his play style directly reflects that. He will never be mistaken for the most talented basketball player in the world, but his ferocious leadership style has lifted this young Timberwolves team to new heights. His tactics may not be appreciated by everyone, but having a respected enforcer is what this team has drastically needed.

What do the Numbers Say?

It’s hard to ignore the numbers. When Beverley is on the court, the Timberwolves are a much better team. Inserting him into the starting lineup changed everything.

Minnesota has had trouble surrounding their youthful core with role players who fit what they have. Fortunately for the Timberwolves, Beverley is a guy who undoubtedly gels with everyone. He doesn’t force anything offensively, plays harder and smarter than anyone on the defensive end, and is the vocal leader this team desperately needed. Furthermore, it doesn’t hurt that he has seemingly loved his time in the Twin Cities from the jump.

https://twitter.com/patbev21/status/1428030814659301376

The Timberwolves rank 10th in defensive rating according to nba.com. Seeing this team fly around defensively has been a revelation that few saw coming. When you set out to change a culture, you can’t do it alone. You need a group who’s hungry to improve with the right guy leading the charge. Proof is in the pudding and the evident buy-in from everyone cements that theory.

Jarred Vanderbilt looks like a first team All-NBA candidate. Anthony Edwards has been lights out as on-ball defender. The team is scrambling with purpose, for what feels like the first time ever.

This clip is a great example of how this team has emerged in that area.

When Patrick Beverley was traded to Minnesota, many fans were just ecstatic to lose Jarrett Culver and Juancho Hernangomez’s contracts. Even though he has made a name for himself in the past, the move didn’t make waves around the mainstream media. Most figured that this trade would probably have marginal returns for both teams.

Turns out Beverley was unquestionably the answer to Minnesota’s problems.

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About Reid Roelofs

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