Whoever would have thought the Timberwolves and L.A. Clippers would be, as they used to say, must-see TV.

It is tonight, even if Clippers All-Star guard Chris Paul isn't expected to play because of a strained hamstring that's kept him out for the last three games.

Neither is Wolves guard J.J. Barea, who stayed home on Thursday from this quick two-game trip.

Rick Adelman said before tonight's game that Barea was feeling some discomfort after playing on that healing sprained ankle and the team decided it was best to give him the weekend to rest.


The Wolves play their only ESPN game of the season -- there's an ESPN2 game against Phoenix way down the road in April -- and after this morning's shootaround, analyst Hubie Brown and the network crew surrounded Rick Adelman and Kevin Love for separate interviews.

Love is poised to sign a contract extension in the next five days that will pay him more than $15 million, but....

"It's funny," he said. "They're going to come over here and talk to me and I'm going to be like, `Let me guess: You want to talk about Ricky.' "

He just might be right.

"I love all the attention he's getting," Love said. "It's kind of fun because it generates hype around our team."

And whoever thought that would happen?

The opening tip comes at 9:30 p.m. tonight.

Enjoy it on ESPN, because Saturday's game at Utah is yet another that won't be televised on FSN locally or anywhere nationally other than the Jazz broadcast that can be found on the NBA League Pass.

Former TImberwolf Randy Foye will start for the Clippers if Paul indeed cannot go.

Michael Beasley and Malcolm Lee remain out for the Wolves. Martell Webster and Brad Miller are along on the trip, but neither is expected to play tonight or tomorrow night.



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Rubio on THAT shot

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Postgame: What a night for the Wolves