2020-21 Game Thread: Knicks vs. Timberwolves

After a cancelation yesterday, the Knicks are back in action, hosting the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Garden tonight. The two worst teams of 2021 had been the Wolves and the Magic and the Knicks just lost to the Magic, so you obviously can’t totally look past the Wolves and just as obviously, the Wolves have been a lot better now that they have Karl-Anthony Towns back (he’s basically the straw that stirs the drink for the Wolves), but they’re still pretty damn bad. Number one pick, Anthony Edwards, had one of the nicest dunks you’ll ever see in a big moment in a game the other day, but he also missed all seven three pointers he took. He is r-a-w raw. The team is basically a two-man team of Towns (legit superstar) and Malik Beasley (dirtbag who is kind of good) and that’s a really sad statement about how bad the Wolves are right now.

The Knicks, meanwhile, have had three straight days of practice to better integrate Derrick Rose into the offense and come up with ways to do things differently than simply have Taj Gibson step into Nerlens Noel as the backup center, so we might actually get to see some Julius Randle at center and either Obi Toppin at the 4 or even Kevin Knox play a little 4. If there is ever a team that you can experiment against, it is the Minnesota Timberewolves.

Also, of course, the Wolves fired Thibs and then promptly made a point of reversing every move he made as Team President, so you know this game means a lot to Thibs and when something means a lot to Thibs, he will often go the extra mile.

So…yeah, no game is ever a sure thing, but man, this is pretty dang close to it.

Let’s go get back within a game of .500, Knicks!

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91 thoughts to “2020-21 Game Thread: Knicks vs. Timberwolves”

  1. The Kemba contract might be what sticks the Celtics in mediocrity for the next 3 years… Tatum is so damn good and Brown is a good auxiliary piece, but they definitely need something more than Kemba chucking garbage shots and playing no defense.

    Back before the Tatum draft, I noted that I thought Tatum could possibly be as good as Melo and would at least be a rotation player, but I never thought that he’d be better than Melo, but he really has been so far. Total shocking just how good he’s been.

    And totally delightful how the Celtics have failed to build a championship caliber team around him and have actually been going backwards recently.

  2. Watching the Eastern playoffs last season even with a halfclosed eye you could see two things:
    Hayward and Kemba should go
    Embiid and Simmons should stay

  3. Would you take Ricky Rubio for nothing (aka, a top 55 protected 2nd)? The Knicks have enough cap room to take him without sending any salary back. He is going to make $17.9 million next year.

  4. ephus:
    Would you take Ricky Rubio for nothing (aka, a top 55 protected 2nd)?The Knicks have enough cap room to take him without sending any salary back.He is going to make $17.9 million next year.

    I probably wouldn’t, but would be fine with it.

  5. The Knicks have been playing a 1-2-2 zone for the last few possessions. Kenny Albert has not mentioned it. They are daring Towns to go shoot threes.

  6. ephus:
    Would you take Ricky Rubio for nothing (aka, a top 55 protected 2nd)?The Knicks have enough cap room to take him without sending any salary back.He is going to make $17.9 million next year.

    I would not, that’s a lot of salary next year

  7. TWolves already with a guitar god(McLaughlin) and a piano genius (Monk)!
    Knicks nothing so far!

  8. god …these refs are bad…the nba is a mess…not sure if it’s all these new young refs…but they stink

  9. Knicks playing really quite badly, and yet up by 8. I guess if you’re going to blow half your layups, do it against the Timberwolves.

  10. “how about smokey Mitchell Robinson”

    lol
    Not playing tonight but we got Axl Derrick Rose!

  11. Can’t figure out Okogie. Seemed like he was poised to breakout and be a solid starter, but it looks like he has stagnated to be more of an Shumpert type guy.

  12. Without looking it up, here is my trivia answer (5 Knicks all stars since 2000)

    1. Carmelo
    2. Stoudemire
    3. Porzingis
    4. Lee
    5. Marbury

  13. Without looking it up, here is my trivia answer (5 Knicks all stars since 2000)

    1. Carmelo
    2. Stoudemire
    3. Porzingis
    4. Lee
    5. Marbury

    I guessed Tyson instead of Lee, same other 4. I think you’re right thinking back on it.

  14. I got 4 out of 5 before I checked.

    It’s Melo, Stat, Chandler, Lee and Spreewell. I didn’t get Lee.

  15. Randle is a beast. The amount of progress he has made since last season is astounding.

  16. Are we entirely sure Randle isn’t on MJ’s special sports drink Bugs Bunny gives to everyone at 1/2 time in Space Jam?

  17. Celticsblog.com is melting down…here’s a representative comment:

    This team is embarrassing. A team constructed of selfish one on one players who lack heart, toughness, drive and love for the game of basketball. Tatum and Brown look absolutely miserable. Haven’t seen them smile in two full seasons. They clearly don’t like Ainge’s wife Brad Stevens.

  18. The mark of a good team is when they take a lead early and then pile it on. The Knicks look good.

    The T-Wolves look awful and are not playing any defense.

  19. DRed:
    Noel has great hands except when you pass him the basketball

    Does he dip his hands in axle grease before the game?

  20. Yeah, Payton to RJ is quite rare, but such a thing of beauty, as Clyde said it, that’s really awesome.

  21. This is bullshit coaching. The inefficiency of the second unit is all Thibs. But he keeps Rose in. It’s infuriating.

  22. I’m curious whether people who were praising Rose after 2 games for being key to help Quickley perform better will also credit him for IQ struggling lately.

  23. I don’t really believe in Thibs current scheme at all. It maxes out. And then it’s utter nonsense.

  24. Well, we thought DRose would go back to his mean, but no he decided to go below the mean to compensate those very good games and get back to the mean right away

  25. Reminder that Karl-Anthony Towns is insanely good at basketball and we should make him a Knick

  26. Rose and IQ were both awful again. I wonder how coach will handle that…

    Play the starters 35 minutes each?

  27. I’m having trouble loading the KB website…is something going on?

    It looks like the only teams tanking are MIN, CLE, DET, and maybe HOU. We’re gonna have to play better than this to make the top 10 in the EC. The Wiz, Magic and Bulls are all being competitive lately.

  28. I feel like the minutes are trending in the wrong direction. With Rose in the mix, Thibs is even quicker with the hook for both IQ and Barrett, Toppin can still barely get any minutes, he played less than 2 in the second half today.

    I do not like Rose and Gibson doubling up IQ and Toppin’s minutes. IQ is the fourth man off the bench, Toppin is the fifth. Three weeks ago IQ was angling for a starting spot, closing games, and seemed indispensable, now he seems like a total afterthought in the offense, mainly just lining up threes and forcing the occasional foray into the paint, usually culminating in a bad floater. This is not because IQ all of a sudden forgot how to play it’s because his role was greatly diminished and he is struggling to fit, all so we could make room for Rose to shoot 1-8.

    When things go south at all even if it’s not Toppin’s fault he is immediately pulled because heaven forbid this team learn to overcome adversity with Randle on the bench. Thibs has to let both the young guys and the bench as a whole play through a rough patch. Pulling the plug on your bench after 2 minutes while still up 10 points against a bad team in a fairly meaningless game just shows how we cannot trust Thibs to not over-rely on his starters. There is no world in which Randle should play 40 minutes against the worst team in the NBA, in February when all but one player on our team is healthy and available.

  29. Well, we played terribly, but at least Thibs can take satisfaction in the Timberwolves firing Ryan Saunders after the game…

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