A couple key folks weren’t at Timberwolves practice Friday.
Kevin Love was away with family after hearing about his grandmother’s death. Coach Rick Adelman, meanwhile, was with his son David, whose wife was about to give berth.
Adelman is expected back behind the bench Saturday when the Wolves host Miami. Love, though, mostly likely will not be here, according to Terry Porter, who ran practice in Adelman’s absence today.
“I wouldn’t think he’d be able to play tomorrow,” Porter said. “I don’t think he’s probably going to be back by then. I’m pretty sure it would be tough for him to be back.”
That will make Saturday’s game that much harder. The Heat are one of the two gold-standard teams in an otherwise weak Eastern Conference. And they’ve lost two straight games. Miami hasn’t lost three straight regular season games since Jan. of 2012.
With Love the Wolves would have been more capable of getting some inside points against the Heat. Without him, it will be hard to stop LeBron James and company. Dwyane Wade, who missed Thursday’s game with an illness – and who has missed a few games with knee soreness – didn’t play Thursday in a 20-point loss in Chicago but should play Saturday.
Porter didn’t say who would start in Love’s place, deferring that decision to Adelman Saturday. But the best bet is Dante Cunningham. But it could also mean extra minutes for Luc Mbah a Moute, whose defensive skills will be needed against James.
In other items:
--Chase Budinger continues to improve following knee surgery. Still not cleared for basketball activity, Budinger did mix in a few dunks with his post-practice shooting today.
That’s about all for now. I’ll get back to you after tomorrow’s morning shoot.