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The Wolves now have a 43.9 percent chance in May 16 lottery to pick sixth and a slightly better than 1 in 20 chance to win the No. 1 overall pick.
Ricky Rubio made strides this season, yes. But Timberwolves coach and president of basketball operations Tom Thibodeau also took a long look at other guards in the season finale.
Tom Thibodeau believes Timberwolves stars Karl-Anthony Towns, 21, and Andrew Wiggins, 22, have found something together despite a 51-loss season. Next up: more development.
Tom Thibodeau's first season as Minnesota's coach and president of basketball operations came to a close Wednesday night with a 123-118 loss in Houston.
Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns combined for 81 points, but the Wolves lost when D'Angelo Russell hit a three-pointer at the buzzer for the Lakers.
Andrew Wiggins, Karl-Anthony Towns and Gorgui Dieng are closing in on a new standard for starters.
Nobody prowls an NBA sideline longer or louder than Tom Thibodeau. And his piercing voice is part of the learning curve for the young Timberwolves.
Timberwolves coach Tom Thibodeau considered Tuesday's 121-107 loss at Golden State something of a test of character.
The point guard made shots from near and far as the Wolves avenged their Friday night collapse in Los Angeles.
With his fifth NBA team, the former Wolves first-round pick is a veteran presence on a team loaded with youth.
Loss of Nemanja Bjelica is latest disruption to team.
Ricky Rubio's three free throws with 3.4 seconds left were the difference after the Wolves trailed by nine points with fewer than six minutes left.
"Once our season is over, I'll get up to speed on all of that,'' he said.
In the three games since the Wolves returned from a 0-3 Eastern trip that quashed their playoff aspirations, rookie Kris Dunn's playing time has more than doubled.
Apple Valley's Tre Jones had 24 points and 18 rebounds to lead his team to the state 4A title on Saturday night, sparking natural comparisons to his older brother and his accomplishments.
The Wolves on Saturday lost their sixth straight, this time to a hot Portland team that has won 10 of 13.
With just 10 games remaining, Tom Thibodeau said now is not the time for yielding or rest, even if draft-lottery jockeying has replaced playoff aspirations.
The Lakers scored nine unanswered points late in the fourth quarter against the Wolves, then the first eight points in overtime to win just their 21st game of the season.
The Lakers on Friday honored Shaquille O'Neal by placing his bronzed image outside along with those of Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Jerry West, and famed announcer Chick Hearn.
The games announced Monday are the most visible examples in the Wolves' strategy to make themselves and their young internationally famous stars something of "China's Team."
With Nemanja Bjelica lost for the season, the Timberwolves will sign veteran free-agent forward Omri Casspi — a similarly sized player who can do many of the same things — for the season's final 13 games.
Not long after they had won seven of 11 games largely by holding opponents to fewer than 100 points, the Wolves are coming home after an 0-3 road trip.
Tom Thibodeau says that Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns need more than just big stats.
Following an 18-point defeat, Timberwolves coach Tom Thibodeau reminded his team that an effort like Friday's won't do in the stretch run.
With Nemanja Bjelica and quite possibly recently signed Lance Stephenson done for the year the Wolves are looking at all options.
Just when he seemed to find his way, Timberwolves forward Nemanja Bjelica will miss the rest of the season because of a foot injury sustained Wednesday at Boston.
Ricky Rubio has picked up triple-double, a career-high 19 assist game and a 16.3-point average over the past six games but the Wolves are 3-3 in that stretch.
The Wolves were soundly beaten by the Celtics in another loss they can't afford with the regular season winding down.
With just 17 games left, they must hop three teams and gain 3½ games in the standings.
With Jim Petersen set to broadcast Wolves' games Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, he's hoping Northwestern gets a Thursday-Saturday schedule so he can watch Sanjay Lumpkin play.
The Wolves lost for just the second time in six games and the third time in nine games to a Bucks team that now has won six consecutive games,
If the apples really don't fall far from the tree, you could say the two men who will coach Monday at Target Center are something of a pair.
The star forward hit two free throws with 12.8 seconds left to negate a Golden State rally.
Golden State superstar Stephen Curry surpassed his father in NBA career points scored with a three-pointer in the third quarter of Friday's game against…
Karl-Anthony Towns' 29-point, 14-rebound night was his 18th consecutive 20-point game and his 100th career double-double, helping the Wolves for the seventh time in 11 games.
A condition called thrombocytopenia - a platelets deficiency that causes internal bleeding, bruising and slow clotting - caused Adreian Payne to miss 13 games.
Center tries to adjust his game with key floor partner out because of injury.
When the Spurs ratcheted their defense as a team with the NBA's second-best record can, they forced the Wolves into too many mistakes to hold their lead.
Kawhi Leonard's big fourth-quarter helped push the game to overtime, in which the Spurs doubled-up the Wolves 14-7. "They keep doing what they're doing and in the end, they've gotcha," Ricky Rubio said.
"Ours is a hard game to officiate, it really is," Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau said.
Tom Thibodeau likes how pairing of smaller guards Tyus Jones and Kris Dunn has worked.
The same team that allowed Houston 58 three-point attempts and 142 points just four nights earlier has also held Chicago, Sacramento, Dallas and now the Jazz under 90 points in recent games.
Tom Thibodeau visited Utah during his year's coaching sabbatical a season ago, studying a Jazz franchise that's a model for his team.
In 10 games since the Wolves' three young stars became two, Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns together have averaged nearly 60 points a game while shooting better than 56 percent.
Rookie guard Buddy Hield suited up for Sacramento on Monday, nine days after becoming one of the featured pieces in an unexpected trade that sent DeMarcus Cousins to the Pelicans.
The Wolves trail Denver by 2½ games and Sacramento by one for the final playoff spot in the West. But they must catch Portland and Dallas as well in the season's final six weeks.
Karl-Anthony Towns had 37 points and 22 rebounds but was frustrated after the turnover-prone Wolves gave up 142 points to the Houston Rockets.
Ricky Rubio moved beyond Thursday's eventful trade deadline from which nothing occurred with a huge game Friday. He followed that up with a 14-point, 11-assist effort Saturday.
Veteran point guard Ricky Rubio is used to trade rumors, but these seemed more intense. "I mean, we're professionals, but we're human beings, too," Rubio said.
The NBA trade deadline passed at 2 p.m. without any trade announcement from the Timberwolves.
Rose played for Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau in Chicago for five seasons, and his contract with this season's $21.3 million salary expires this summer.
Andrew Wiggins isn't an All-Star this season, but he has scored at least 20 points in 15 consecutive games. "The individual [award] stuff comes when your team does well," coach Tom Thibodeau said.
Andrew Wiggins backed up Tuesday's 41-point night against Cleveland with a 40-point game on 15-for-26 shooting at Pepsi Center.
Nursing a grade 2 ankle sprain, Lance Stephenson did not accompany the Wolves to Denver for Wednesday's game, which was the final one on the 10-day contract he signed last week.
Andrew Wiggins has averaged 29.8 points in five games against the Cavaliers during his career. But the Wolves have lost all of them.
While expressing empathy for injured teammate Kevin Love (out six weeks), LeBron James made it clear his back is broad and his legs still sturdy.
The Wolves' Lance Stephenson once faced the game's greatest active player, LeBron James, in three consecutive 2014 playoff games when Stephenson played for Indiana.
LaVine will have his torn anterior cruciate ligament repaired at the Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in collaboration with Wolves team orthopedic surgeon Diane Dahm
Minnesota doubled-up the Bulls 34-17 in the first quarter and rolled from there over Chicago but coach Tom Thibodeau downplayed the significance.
Behind Anthony Davis' 42 points, New Orleans was the latest to erase a big deficit.
Timberwolves guard Lance Stephenson's present met his recent past when his new team played host to New Orleans.
Lance Stephenson provided the "edge," Andrew Wiggins scored 31 points and Tyus Jones nailed a three-pointer with 19.5 seconds left to spark the Wolves.
New Timberwolves guard Lance Stephenson joined the team Wednesday and declared himself older, wiser and still only 26.
Lance Stephenson seeks a place to play and the Timberwolves need a wing player who can absorb missing minutes now that Zach LaVine's season is over.
Agitated Timberwolves coach Tom Thibodeau called for improvement after his team gave up 71 points to Miami and a late rally fell short. "Our best players have to lead," he said.
He replaces LaVine as starter in a reconfigured rotation where coach Tom Thibodeau likely will play two point guards together and need Shabazz Muhammad to pick up LaVine's missing scoring with the team's second unit.
They have turned their eyes toward the upcoming All-Star weekend break and beyond, focused not on dunk and skills contests but staying fresh.
Marcus Morris made five three-pointers and scored 36 points and Orono's Jon Leuer chipped in 24 to lead the Pistons to victory Friday night.
The Wolves on Friday make their last visit to the home of the "Bad Boys" and a brawl.
"Minnesota put the ball in my hands as soon as I got there," Andrew Wiggins said, "and let me grow." Wiggins was drafted first overall by Cleveland in 2014 but later traded him.
The shorthanded Cavaliers still played with Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson and LeBron James, who helped Cleveland throttle the Wolves by 28 points.
Playing from behind all night, the Timberwolves could not answer Paul George's 32 points. Adding to the tough night: Wolves mascot Crunch ran into Karl-Anthony Towns Sr. during a stunt gone wrong.
Champion of the past two NBA All-Star slam-dunk contests, Timberwolves guard Zach LaVine won't defend his title and try for a third next month…
Both Karl-Anthony Towns and Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau said they won't spend much time or energy contemplating Towns' chances for the All-Star Game. Reserves are announced Thursday.
Andrew Wiggins missed one of two free throws with 12.1 seconds left but his desperation shot as the clock ticked out found the net.
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