Posts Tagged ‘Minnesota Timberwolves’

Comparing Zach LaVine and Vince Carter


VIDEO: Dunk recap

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — One of the greatest dunk contest performances of all-time was in Oakland in 2000, when Vince Carter unleashed epic dunk after epic dunk. And while dunk contests since then have been up-and-down, this year Minnesota rookie Zach LaVine turned in another dunk contest for the ages. In fact, LaVine has drawn comparisons to Carter, and as this Vine from the NBA shows, there certainly are some similarities…

(Vine via TNLP)

Timberwolves prepare for big return of…Mike Miller?

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The biggest move this offseason for the Minnesota Timberwolves was trading away Kevin Love to Cleveland. It was a deal that worked out well for everyone: Love got to go play for a contender, while the T-Wolves were able to re-boot the franchise and add draft picks and young talent like Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett. This Saturday, Kevin Love returns to Minnesota for the first time since the trade. So the Timberwolves released this video preparing fans for the big matchup and the return to town of…wait, Mike Miller?


VIDEO: Wolves Miller

Thaddeus Young invents new form of rookie hazing for Andrew Wiggins

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — We’ve officially reached that time in the season when the players are ready for a vacation and can’t wait for the All-Star break. So how do they deal with that ennui? For some veterans, it seems like this is when they start picking on the rookies, from Philadelphia all the way to Los Angeles.

But it’s not just on the coasts. Check out this video from the last night’s postgame interview session in Minnesota, where the T-Wolves beat the Celtics 110-98. When it was Andrew Wiggins‘ time to talk, veteran forward Thaddeus Young couldn’t let him go unscathed…


VIDEO: Wiggins interview

Andrew Wiggins has his dream job

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Sometimes old school yearbooks contain photos or information we’d rather forget than recall. But yesterday on Reddit, someone uncovered a middle school yearbook that contained an old class photo of Minnesota rookie Andrew Wiggins, and even way back then, Wiggins had a clear idea of what he wanted to do for a living when he grew up. Guess some dreams do come true…

Here’s footage of 14-year-old Ricky Rubio

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — As of today, Minnesota’s Ricky Rubio is second in the NBA in assists per game, averaging 11 per contest. Rubio has talked often about how he wants to be the leader of the young Timberwolves team, and even though he has just three years of NBA experience, he’s got a lifetime of basketball experience. Rubio has been a professional basketball player since he was a kid, and made his debut in Spain’s ACB league with DKV Joventut as a 14-year-old. Here’s a cool video of Rubio at 14, learning the fundamentals with his then-coach, Sito Alonso.


VIDEO: Young Ricky

(via Sportando)

Ricky Rubio looks like he does not want to forget Minnesota’s win

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Following a big road win tonight in Brooklyn, Minnesota center Nikola Pekovic addressed the media and noted that the team will do their best to forget this win and move on to the next game. In the background, Ricky Rubio seems like he’s not so sure about this strategy…

And he confirmed these feelings later in the night:

Milwaukee Bucks break out trick play

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — We’re still in the NBA preseason, but Jason Kidd and the Milwaukee Bucks are already in midseason form when it comes to trick plays. Kidd, you’ll remember, had a few tricks up his sleeve last season when was coaching the Nets, such as the game where he “spilled” a drink on the court to get a free time out. Last night against Minnesota, guard Bucks Nate Wolters trotted over toward Kidd on the sideline as if he was going to call a timeout, and when the defense made a similar assumption, Wolters had a clear path to the rim. Nifty play…


VIDEO: No TO

Minnesota Timberwolves 90210

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — A year ago we saw a Minnesota Timberwolves video made a group of Spanish T-Wolves fans that mixed together the theme from “Cheers” with shots of the Wolves. This season, to celebrate the new start in Minnesota, the same fans have re-cut the opening credits of the seminal ’90s series “Beverly Hills 90210″ using members of the Timberwolves. It’s brilliantly done, although I have to admit I was hoping for Flip Saunders to pop up in the Joe E. Tata slot at the end of the credits.


VIDEO: MN 90210

(via SN)

Wiggins and LaVine to go by “Bounce Brothers”

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — These days it’s nearly as important to have a cool nickname as it is to actually have great production on the court. Kobe is the Mamba, LeBron is the King, and in Golden State we have the Splash Brothers. And with Andrew Wiggins and Zach LaVine teaming up this season in Minnesota, it was clear they were going to need a nickname as well, since they’re all about the highlight plays. But before waiting for someone to give them a nickname they may or may not have liked, they decided to take things into their own hands and give themselves a moniker they could roll with: The Bounce Brothers.

Someone (Underdog?) put that on a t-shirt…


VIDEO: Meet Minnesota’s ‘Bounce Brothers’

MUSCLEWATCH 2014 (Update 2)

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — It’s a Friday in the fall, which means it’s time for…wait for it…MUSCLEWATCH!

What, you may ask, is MUSCLEWATCH? I really hope by now you’re not still asking that question. But basically, it stems from my friend Matt and I noticing years ago that our local paper would always report that players had gained 15 pounds of MUSCLE in the offseason. No matter the sport, it was never 12, never 16, never 9, never 18, always 15 pounds of muscle. So we began keeping an eye on the papers looking for references to the magic 15 pounds of MUSCLE. I started chronicling this each season in my blog over at SLAM, and eventually MUSCLEWATCH became about more than just the 15 pounds of muscle and more about guys who had either gained or lost a lot of weight. Previous winners include Thad Young and Rudy Gay.

If you see MUSCLEWATCH info, please tweet it and use the hashtag #MUSCLEWATCH to help us keep all this info straight.

One question I saw on Twitter that’s worth addressing…

No. Despite my best efforts, it’s impossible to tabulate a precise number. Has anyone counted all the stars in the sky? Do we know how many broken dreams line Broadway? No, no we don’t. It’s better to just understand that there are thousands if not millions of pounds won and lost out there and keep it moving.

WHEN WE LAST LEFT MUSCLEWATCH, there was a lot of sound and fury and MUSCLE, but not a lot of detail. Let’s get into the MUSCLE…

• Once again, actual NBA teams are using the #MUSCLEWATCH hashtag, as we saw in this tweet from the Toronto Raptors regarding Terrence Ross

That tweet was welcome, if a bit vague, so we also appreciate this clarification from Holly McKenzie, from which we learn Ross actually put on the MUSCLEWATCH gold standard of 15 pounds…

HOWEVER! Nobody actually specified if it’s 15 pounds of MUSCLE. And it matters, believe me, it matters.

• Last week we saw a few MUSCLEWATCH names in Minnesota, and we get more detail this, as Anthony Bennett, Ronny Turiaf and Shabazz Muhammad got into some, frankly, really weird workout stuff. Just read the beginning of this story

The children are slipping down Shabazz Muhammad’s back, inches away from falling into a pit of whitewater rapids and fire.
As Muhammad gropes for another handhold, his entire weight and an additional 100 pounds of helpless youth suspended above the perils below, he falters. A pair of guiding hands help steady him but only for a moment. Regaining his balance and summoning some interior-laden surge of strength, he climbs his way to safety while the kids on his back remain unharmed.

They worked out using HELPLESS YOUTH! Children were SLIPPING DOWN HIS BACK INTO A DEATH TRAP WHIRLPOOL! OK, OK, this was all imaginary, but still, this is extreme MUSCLEWATCH. No wonder they call their guy Hell’s Trainer.

Despite the insane workout, Muhammad said he came into camp at 224, which is two pounds more than he supposedly weighed a year ago before the draft. And Bennett, according to the story above, lost “about 10 pounds.” So while they each may be in much better shape, for MUSCLEWATCH purposes they still have some work to do.

Kobe Bryant has had a love-hate relationship with MUSCLEWATCH through the years, and this year is no different. A few months ago, paparazzi photos seemed to suggest that Kobe had put on, well, a few pounds. But then Kobe showed up in camp looking svelte, and Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak suggested Kobe had lost 10-12 pounds.

How did Kobe do it? By eating “clean.”

I guess that means a lot of hand washing?

• We need to send a shoutout to Utah Jazz beat writer Jody Genessy from the Deseret News, who has been all over MUSCLEWATCH, including several tweets…

And since we’re talking Jazz, we’ve had our first-ever announcer appearance on MUSCLEWATCH, as Jazz radio voice David Locke was reported to be in phenomenal shape…

I caught up with David this week and he confirmed that he is feeling good, although he noted that once the season begins his bicycling regimen will likely fall by the wayside. Still, a terrific showing all around in Utah. We salute you!

• Bonjour, Monsieur Diaw! Spurs forward Boris Diaw has had some ups and downs with his weight through the years. At Spurs media day this season, coach Gregg Popovich acknowledged Diaw’s struggle…

Boris used social media to respond, as one should, with the following photo and this caption: “No worries pop only one glass of wine and daily workouts!”

No worries pop only one glass of wine and daily workouts!

A photo posted by Borisdiaw (@diawboris) on

Also, thanks to the San Antonio Express News, which put together a 117-photo gallery about which players are and are not arriving in shape in San Antonio.

• WE HAVE A CONTENDER! Add Kendrick Perkins to the long list of guys who have dropped weight this summer, and with Perk, unlike with LeBron and Melo, we actually have a concrete number…

• Up in Boston, Celtics forward Jeff Green has put on some MUSCLE…

And Kelly Olynyk is “definitely stonger,” with a #MUSCLEWATCH in the story!!

• And finally, in Phoenix, Alex Len has apparently added “10-15 pounds.” Of MUSCLE? Well, that’s unclear.

See you next week. Keep MUSCLING!