In a mild surprise, Wolves coach Rick Adelman said he will start Luc Mbah a Moute in place of the absent Kevin Love in tonight’s game against the Heat at Target Center.
It is simply a matter of matchups, Adelman said. “They’ve got two tough guys in LeBron (James) and (Dwyane) Wade and we’re just trying to give us our best chance,” Adelman said. “With Kevin out, we’re going to have to defend to stay in the game. So we’ll start him. It gives us more flexibility. I can bring Dante Cunningham off the bench.’’
It should be noted that Adelman was talking about this before the Heat announced that Michael Beasley, the former Wolves player now coming off the bench in Miami, was out with a sore hamstring. We’ll have to see if that affects Adelman’s rotation.
But it’s clear he feels the team needs to defend to have a chance. Well, that and score points. Kevin Martin will be looked upon to score. And, given Miami’s recent troubles defending in the paint, it figures that Nikola Pekovic will be looked to early and often. “Pek and (Martin) are two guys who have to score,” Adelman said.
In other news:
--Wade said he’s frustrated having to deal with injuries that have kept him out of a handful of games. But he’s good to go tonight.
--Adelman missed practice Friday to be there for his son David (also a Wolves assistant) and his wife Jenny, who was about to give birth to their first child. All the news is good. Leonard Joseph (LJ) Adelman was born Friday at about 6 p.m. It is Adelman’s eighth grandchild, third grandson.
--Adelman said Love, who is away with family after the death of his grandmother, is expected back in Minnesota Sunday. Adelman said Love should be here to practice with the team Monday and accompany the team to Detroit for Tuesday’s game.