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Wednesday, December 07, 2022

Young and arrogant, or young and self-confident? Who are the Timberwolves?

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The Timberwolves were jumping on the scorers’ table, running around the court, tearing up and taking out the Clippers after their play-in win at Target Center on Tuesday.

Well, well, mostly it was just Patrick Beverly.

Even if a victory is celebrated with exaggeration Get Minnesota was highly regarded by some in the playoffs. TNT’s Inside the NBA Crew made fun of it more as a joke; That’s what that team does. Even Timberwolves assistant coach Alston Turner admitted in his interview with Dan Barreiro on KFXN-100.3 FM on Wednesday that his approach was “funny.”

Others even tweeted jokes. All is fair in the game. This is the life of entertainers and athletes.

But others took it seriously, noting that Minnesota shouldn’t have gotten so much pleasure from their feat. Frankly, that analysis is far more monotonous than any of the wolves’ work. The win meant a lot to Minnesota — a team chosen to do very little this year — and a fan base starved of any semblance of success.

“Everyone, every team, every player has different goals, and you don’t have to celebrate just for the biggest goal, you know what I’m saying?” Jared Vanderbilt said. “Anytime you check off small goals, you know, it’s got to be a little festive.”

The fact that there are people suggesting the opposite is not surprising. Minnesota has been battling the court of public opinion for much of the year. Are the Timberwolves Convinced? cocky? Arrogant? a little bit of everything?

Wolves were shocked by a reckless chase of 50 points for Anthony Edwards in a recent game against the Spurs, a decision that allowed San Antonio to return to the competition. He is taken to task to show the Lakers at Target Center, where he mocks Russell Westbrook’s air ball, rushes to the Los Angeles bench to inform the Lakers that Westbrook “stinks” and even That slapped LeBron James on the butt.

Well, that was all Beverly too.

But then, the wolves were ridiculed.

“It’s funny because when Memphis does this, everyone applauds,” Beverly said. “But when we do that, we’re classified as a team with very little character. Right.”

Ah, first-round playoff rivals from Memphis, Minnesota. Yes, the Grizzlies are also a young team full of enthusiasm. And they celebrate their success, too. In fact, after Minnesota topped the Grizzlies in February, Beverly tweeted “Memphis Grizzs ain’t no dancing or crazy talking tonight. Oh well. Good luck the rest of the way.”

Yet the Grizzlies are seen as one of the most entertaining teams in the NBA. Ja Morant is one of the best players in the game. Combine that with the upcoming Wolves featuring the superstar-to-be of the second year in Anthony Edwards, and it should all be an electric best-of-seven series.

“I think it’s good for the NBA. They’re getting to see two of the most exciting players in the league, Jaa Morant and Anthony Edwards, play against each other. They’re getting to see two teams that are the next ‘it’ teams. Maybe, the next Dynasty teams you’re seeing and the Dynasty outfits that are growing,” said Carl-Anthony Towns.

“At the same time, (it’s) a slap in the face to all the media that say small-market teams can’t get it done. We will go there and make ratings and we will finish the show.

But back to Beverly’s point: Memphis’ “confidence” is celebrated, and Minnesota’s is criticized. Why?

Spurs television analyst and former NBA All-Star and Champion Sean Elliott shared his thoughts on the matter during the Spurs’ recent regular season game against the Warriors.

“When you look at Memphis compared to Minnesota, they are a lot more disciplined. They have better habits,” Elliott said. “They’re both young teams, they’re both extremely talented, but who do you like better over there? Memphis, obviously.

“Minnesota, to me, acts like they’ve won something. Memphis is like, ‘We’re going to win something, and we’re not slowing down.’ And they play with great confidence, but not with some arrogance.”

Memphis is seen as a team enjoying their ride to the top. Minnesota is seen as a team celebrating something it hasn’t accomplished.

Towns said that the wolves “didn’t care” about the discrepancy in perception, although it’s a bit hard to believe.

The solution to change the narrative is relatively simple, and the wolves may be taking some note of it over the next two weeks, starting on Saturday. Victory.

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