Tag:Minnesota Timberwolves
Posted on: March 20, 2011 6:54 pm
Edited on: March 20, 2011 6:56 pm

Video: DeMarcus Cousins ejected after shoving

Sacramento Kings big man DeMarcus Cousins was ejected after a shoving match with members of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Posted by Ben Golliver.

Water is wet, the sky is blue and Sacramento Kings rookie big man DeMarcus Cousins can't control his emotions. 

Cousins' latest display of immaturity came on Sunday in a game against the Minnesota Timberwolves. With the Kings leading 77-62 near the end of the third quarter, Cousins couldn't keep his cool after being pushed by pesky Timberwolves point guard Luke Ridnour

Standing off the ball, Cousins took a two-arms shoved from Ridnour. The foul was obvious, completely unnecessary and immediately whistled. Cousins, however, couldn't let it go at that, stomping towards Ridnour and bumping bodies while the two jawed. Timberwolves center Nikola Pekovic intervened, lightly restraining Cousins, which led the Sacramento big man to shove out with both of his arms, an act that Pekovic reciprocated.  

But, wait, there's more. Timberwolves guard Martell Webster then attempted to play peacemaker, putting his left arm into Cousins' chest, an act that again led Cousins to shove Webster away with both of his arms, tossing Webster into teammate Jason Thompson. At that point, Cousins was immediately booted from the game by multiple officials.

Here's a look at the sequence courtesy of YouTube user Kingsflix.

Cousins and Kings fans will likely feel as if he got the raw end of this deal given that his actions were mostly in response or retaliation to Minnesota's actions, but at some point he will need to come to terms with the fact that his size and track record make him an easy mark for officials. 

So, Luke Ridnour shoved you. Who cares? Set up the side out of bounds play and nail him with a good, solid pick. Cousins stepped to Ridnour with something to prove, but he only proved how easily he is mentally manipulated.

The Kings held on for the victory over the Timberwolves, 127-95.
Posted on: March 15, 2011 4:01 pm

Ricky Rubio is in no hurry to make NBA debut

Spanish point guard Ricky Rubio sounds like he's willing to wait to make his NBA debut. Posted by Ben Golliver. ricky-rubio

The future of Spanish point guard Ricky Rubio, taken by the Minnesota Timberwolves with the No. 5 pick in the 2009 NBA Draft, remains unknown, but as each year passes it seems the two opposing camps harden. In Minnesota and among Timberwolves executives, Rubio is a lock to come to the NBA and become the savior for one of the league's least successful franchises. Everywhere else, it seems, the prevailing opinion is that Rubio's immediate future and playing career will continue in Spain, where he currently headlines for powerhouse FC Barcelona. 

The latest indication that Rubio is willing to keep the Timberwolves waiting came in an interview with Spanish publication Marca, which was translated by HoopsHype. Here are some of Rubio's comments.
Ricky Rubio: "I do have interest in the NBA, but not as in right away" 
Rubio: "I signed a six-year contract with a buyout option after the second season. If I leave this year I would have to pay an amount of money and that's it. It's a unilateral decision that I have to make, although if I had to leave at any time, I would talk to the club and the NBA franchise, which is currently Minnesota."    Rubio: "Going to the NBA is a dream; every good Spanish player wants to follow Gasol's steps because he's a role model." Rubio also said the lockout will be an important issue when making a decision.
Rubio's statements come about a month and a half after a New York Times report detailed his struggles on the court this season and hinted at his hesitancy to come to the NBA, and specifically the Timberwolves.
“The bottom line is, why would he want to play in Minnesota?” a senior member of Rubio’s camp said this month. “He’ll continue to say all the diplomatic things, and Minnesota needs to keep his value up for trade purposes, but the family’s preference is to be on the East Coast, specifically New York, Miami or Boston. He wouldn’t be troubled if he has to stay another year.”
Back in October, there was further talk that Rubio's family wasn't crazy about the Timberwolves.

The potential for a lockout next season, as Rubio acknowledges, is a huge factor here. Coming to the NBA would already be a gamble from an on-court and financial perspective for Rubio, who is established as a legit international superstar. Rubio has a lot to lose with any possible move and, if he does decide to come to the NBA, you can bet it will happen in as risk-free manner as possible. The timing will be right financially, he'll find the right team in the right market to help maximize his endorsement opportunities and there will be a cast of teammates in place that will ensure a smooth transition. Why would he settle on any of those factors?

Unfortunately, Rubio has so much more to offer Minnesota than Minnesota has to offer Rubio, especially in this era of financial unknown. At just 20 years old, with so much at stake, he'd be foolish to rush into anything life-changing.
Posted on: March 15, 2011 10:12 am
Edited on: March 15, 2011 11:45 am

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

Posted by Royce Young

NBA officials are used to hearing insults and "critiques" of their work. It's part of the job. But don't tweet it, especially if it's about Bill Spooner.

Spooner and the NBA have filed for damages in excess of $75,000 against AP reporter Jon Krawczynski of Minnesota for a tweet he posted during the Timberwolves Jan. 24 game against the Rockets.

Krawczynski tweeted,
"Ref Bill Spooner told Rambis he'd 'get it back' after a bad call. Then he made an even worse call on Rockets. That's NBA officiating folks."

What really happened, according to Spooner, is that after a questionable call early in the second quarter, Kurt Rambis gave Spooner an earful about the call. Spooner promised Rambis he'd take a look at the play in question and review it at the half. Rambis snidely asked how he'd get the points back though. Spooner says he didn't respond to that.

Spooner called the tweet defamatory, but the AP and the reporter have refused to remove or retract it. Spooner has been an NBA official for 22 years.

Obviously the NBA is sensitive about these sort of accusations because of the Tim Donaghy situation, so you can't blame Spooner. A tweet claiming he would get Minnesota their points back basically says he shouldn't be officiating NBA games. If he's not going to call it fair, he should be removed. That's why he took so much offense to it. It's a hearty accusation to make. It's one thing to think it, but to publish it is another.

Now of course, the reporter in question is standing behind what he heard so it's obviously possible that's exactly what happened. But still, that's not something you flippantly throw out there. The NBA investigated Spooner following the tweet and didn't find anything against him. But as an official that's never really had an incident, I'm sure Spooner didn't like it. Hench the suing.
Posted on: March 14, 2011 9:02 am
Edited on: March 14, 2011 9:18 am

Wolves' Kahn denies Rambis is set to be fired

Minnesota Timberwolves president David Kahn denies coach Kurt Rambis is set to be fired after the season. Posted by Ben Golliver. kurt-rambis

Last Friday, CBSSports.com's Ken Berger reported that trouble could be brewing for Timberwolves head coach Kurt Rambis, as Minnesota struggles aimlessly through another lost season. 
Of far greater certainty is the status of coach Kurt Rambis, who appears to be on his way out after only two seasons. Though management won't make a final decision until the season is over, sources say there is significant push from within to make a coaching change. Atop the Timberwolves' list of potential successors is Bucks assistant Kelvin Sampson, one of the people with knowledge of the organization's thinking said. With a young roster clearly lacking in veteran leadership, some members of the Minnesota brain trust believe the team needs a more vocal, energetic coach on the sideline. Rambis is cut from the Phil Jackson cloth of letting his players police themselves, and also has been at odds with Love for long stretches. A coaching change is something Love would not oppose, sources say. Of course, perhaps Rambis would've been more vocal or energetic if he wasn't saddled with among the youngest teams and lowest payrolls in the NBA. 
Over the weekend, Timberwolves president David Kahn denied the report in a brief statement to the Pioneer Press.
"The notion of Kelvin Sampson is completely false," Kahn said, relaying his comments through Wolves media relations director Mike Cristaldi. "That report is not true in all aspects."
As for Rambis, he sounded pretty annoyed.
"I don't comment on things I haven't read, and I never comment on things that cowards say," Rambis said before heading to the team's charter flight to Oakland. "If somebody wants to say something and attach their name to it, that's another matter. Rumors are out there all the time. Anybody can start a rumor, but if they don't attach their name to it, they're a coward."
"I only deal with things I can control," he said. "I do the best job I can every day. I don't worry about rumors and stuff like that. I didn't worry about those kind of things as a player when trade rumors came up, and I don't worry about them now."
The Star Tribune reported that both Kevin Love and Michael Beasley vouched for their coach.
"I worked with him the whole summer and built a great relationship with him," Love said. "No, [any report of friction between the two] is completely false. ... Last year we had our differences. This year there has been nothing like that. For me to say he's not good here would be blasphemy, because this is really only his first season as coach [where] he finally got the players around him that he wanted. I can't be mad. I'm shining under his system. Why would I have a problem with him?"
"I love Kurt," forward Michael Beasley said. "I mean, Kurt, for us, is a great coach. Everybody knew this season was going to be a learning experience. I don't think you can hold [the losing] against him. I have no problem with Kurt. I don't want to change coaches."
Rumors and anonymous sources are the least of Rambis's worries, as the Timberwolves are second to last in the Western Conference, with a record of 17-51, and have so many flaws I don't know where to begin. The Timberwolves are undisciplined (sporting the highest turnover rate in the league), they don't play defense (ranking No. 26 out of 30 in overall efficiency) and they're not particularly potent on offense either, despite the consistent contributions of double-double machine Kevin Love. Many analysts blame Rambis's system for those struggles. 

On top of that, I hate to continue to be the guy to break it to Minnesota: Ricky Rubio is not walking through that door. Sorry, he's just not. Especially not next year, given how Minnesota's season played out this year and the impending labor strife.

Add together the on-court struggles, the revolving door roster and questionable (at best) drafting, and both the coaching staff and management should rightfully be on the hot seat right now. Minnesota has reached the "Could it really be any worse if we totally cleaned house?" stage and that usually results in someone being shown the door, if only to temporarily relieve some of ownership's frustration.

Staying the course just doesn't make sense, not in an environment like this where the boat is spinning madly in circles and taking on water. The only question is how many life rafts will be needed.
Posted on: March 13, 2011 11:57 pm
Edited on: March 14, 2011 12:26 am

Kevin Love's double-double streak ends at 53

Minnesota Timberwolves power forward Kevin Love's consecutive double-double streak has been snapped. Posted by Ben Golliver. kevin-love-gsw

On Friday, Minnesota Timberwolves All-Star power forward Kevin Love notched his 52nd consecutive double-double, moving past Hall of Fame center Moses Malone for most consecutive double-doubles since the NBA merged with the ABA in 1976. After putting up 24 points and 12 rebounds against the Utah Jazz on Friday, Love was all set to take aim at his next target -- Elvin Hayes' 55 straight double-doubles in 17973-1974 -- until both he and the Timberwolves sputtered in a disastrous 100-77 loss to the Golden State Warriors on Sunday night. 

Minnesota's 77 points against Golden State was a season-low and, in the process, Love managed just six points and 12 rebounds in 33 minutes of play, ending his consecutive double-double streak at 53 games.

After the game, Love tweeted, "All good things come to an end, I appreciate everyone sending their love regarding the streak. But with that said...why not start another one on Wednesday?"

Golden State's lead was so big down the stretch that Timberwolves coach Kurt Rambis pulled Love from the game with roughly four minutes to go in the game, streak be damned.

It seems appropriate that Love, the NBA's leading rebounder at 15.8 per game, was still able to get it done on the glass in his streak-snapping game. That he couldn't crack double digit points against the league's fourth-worst defense -- shooting just 1-6 -- makes this look more like an off night rather than a no-show.

The last time Love failed to hit double digits in both points and rebounds? November 19, 2010 against the Los Angeles Lakers, when he finished with 0 points and seven rebounds in 34 minutes.

As many have pointed out, Love's streak is nothing compared to what Wilt Chamberlain used to do, running off consecutive double-double games by the hundreds and averaging a double-double in each of his 14 seasons. Comparing Chamberlain to Love is apples to oranges, though, and Love's accomplishment in the modern era has deserved the acclaim it's received.

In my opinion, consistency is the single most overlooked attribute in today's NBA. Kevin Durant is the league's best scorer, by far, because he does it every single night. Every. Single. Night. Check his game log. The same thing should be said for Love. Even if he doesn't possess the physical talent and athleticism to be a true franchise player, he brings energy and hustle and rebounding intuition night in and night out, no easy feat given how often the weakling Timberwolves walk into the gym overmatched.

You can debate whether or not Love should have been an All-Star this season, but you can't argue against his consistency. That's what Love, and his streak, should be remembered for.
Posted on: March 7, 2011 10:03 pm
Edited on: March 7, 2011 10:30 pm

Kevin Love matches Malone on double-double list

Kevin Love matches Moses Malone for the most consecutive double-doubles since the NBA-ABA merger. 
Posted by Matt Moore

Kevin Love notched his 51st straight double-double Monday night, matching Moses Malone for the most consecutive double-doubles since the NBA-ABA merger in 1976. 

The double-double is seen as the standard mark for efficient productivity, particularly in points and rebounds for big men. Having such consistency to produce 10 or more in two areas of production means you're not just a scorer, or just a rebounder, but a package that provides for contributions in more than one area. Having a double-double in one game is a good night's work. To average it is a remarkably impressive season. Love? 

Kevin Love is averaging 21 points and 16 rebounds, leads the league in rebounding, and just passed the great Moses Malone for most consecutive double-doubles since the merger. 

The next player for Love to pass is Elvin Hayes, who had 55 straight double-doubles in 1973-1974. 

Imagine if Love was on a team that was in any way relevant, even a team pushing for a playoff spot. How good would he be considered? Love has a lot to establish in terms of defense and versatility, but to have this kind of production so early in his career is simply incredible. 
Posted on: March 7, 2011 8:20 am
Edited on: March 7, 2011 8:33 am

Shootaround 3.7.11: Heat collapse again

The Miami Heat choke again, the Los Angeles Lakers don't show class (?), Chris Paul is going to be OK and a whole bunch more in a Monday morning roundup of all the latest NBA happenings. Posted by Ben Golliver. shootaround
  • Yahoo! Sports writes that Miami Heat forward LeBron James points the finger at himself for another Heat late-game loss, this time to the Chicago Bulls on Sunday. "I told my team I’m not going to continue to fail them late in games,” James told reporters in Miami. “I put a lot of the blame on myself.”
  • The Arizona Republic notes that Phoenix Suns point guard Steve Nash passed Isiah Thomas to move into sixth place on the NBA's all-time assist list. Nash said: "He was my No. 1 player. Isiah was my idol and the player I tried to emulate, because he was my size and didn't dunk the ball. I used to try to play like him."
Posted on: February 28, 2011 5:14 pm
Edited on: February 28, 2011 5:19 pm

Reports: Knicks to buy out Corey Brewer

The New York Knicks are reportedly set to buy out wing Corey Brewer. Posted by Ben Golliver. corey-brewer

It feels like a year ago already, but just last week the New York Knicks completed a three-way blockbuster trade that brought Denver Nuggets All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony to the Big Apple. As part of the trade, the Knicks also received Minnesota Timberwolves Corey Brewer, who many thought would be a nice addition to the Knicks' bench during this year's playoff push before he became a restricted free agent this summer.

ESPN.com reports on Monday that the Knicks will buy out Brewer in a move that may catch some people offguard.
Sources say we're about to have a surprising late addition to the buyout market: New York is buying out Corey Brewer. Sources say Celts, Spurs, Mavs and OKC have all registered immediate interest in Brewer, who holds obvious appeal to all as wing defender
HoopsWorld.com confirms the buyout and reports: "Source close to Brewer says he wants to join a playoff team."
Brewer is averaging 8.6 points, 2.7 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.6 steals in 24.3 minutes per game this season. After the trade, the New York Times questioned his fit in New York, given his limited offensive game and the Knicks' other perimeter options.

While Brewer is no superstar and reportedly has the lowest body mass index in the league, he's a competent NBA player who would be a fine role guy on a championship contender. He's not a player you trade a pick for, but if you can get him for cheap after he clears waivers, it's a no-risk, minimal-reward return for teams looking to add some depth on the wings. 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com