Ridnour out again for Wolves, this time tonight at Indiana
- Blog Post by: Jerry Zgoda
- October 12, 2012 - 5:37 PM
Veteran guard Luke Ridnour accompanied the Wolves to Indianapolis and participated in Friday morning's shootaround, but he will not play tonight for the second consecutive preseason game and instead has targeted Saturday's home game against Chicago for his preseason debut.
Ridnour said his stiff back/back spasms doesn't feel quite ready but he is hopeful it will be on Saturday night.
That means J.J. Barea will start against the Pacers once again -- the Wolves won 84-70 in Fargo on Wednesday in the first meeting between the teams -- and Will Conroy will back him up at point guard.
Brandon Roy will start at shooting guard, but Rick Adelman said he'll play just the first quarter so Adelman can play him more in front of the home fans in Saturday's second half of these back-to-back games against Chicago at Target Center.
Derrick Williams will start at small forward instead of Andrei Kirilenko.
Adelman said he might sit down Roy, Kevin Love and Nikola Pekovic after one quarter so he can play other guys.
Adelman also said Williams didn't play just four minutes in Wednesday's second half because he was unhappy with the number of outside shots -- three threes, for example -- that Williams hoisted in that game, although Adelman did say he wants to see more balanced shot selection from him.
Adelman attributed Williams' lack of playing time to the fact that he wanted to play Love more and he wanted to get Lou Amundson and Dante Cunningham into the game at least some.
It's pretty clear that Adelman still considers Williams much more better suited for power forward than small forward, even after Williams trimmed his weight and body fat last summer so he can play more small forward.
Roy talked with the Pacers and their new GM Kevin Pritchard, the Blazers boss when Roy played there, during free agency last summer, including a one-hour phone conversation with Indiana coach Frank Vogel.
But he never met in person with the Pacers before signing with the Wolves, who were the only team loaded up a private plane with the owner, coach, GM and trainer and flew to Seattle to woo him.
Tonight's game also features the return of Amundson to Indy after he played here last season.
Amundson played seven-plus minutes against his old mates at the end of Wednesday's game/
"It was weird," he said. "I had to try to tell myself not to pass it to the wrong team if I got the ball. They had Pacerson their chest. It was fun to see those guys, see some of the coaches I hadn't seen since last year."
No word yet if Amundson is sharing any of "tough pills" with Love.
Love, you might remember, coined that phrase after chippy games with the Pacers the last couple years.
After Danny Granger provoked him last year, Love poked the Pacers by saying they must have taken their tough pills before the game.
Might Amundson have had anything to do with that contentious games last season?
"Of course, of course I did," he said.
Btw, starters Granger and George Hill are out for the Pacers for the second straight game, but David West is expected to return after missing Wednesday's game.
Vogel also is sitting down starting center Roy Hibbert, saying he wants to looks at youngster Miles Plumlee and Ian Mahinmi instead.
Wolves players probably thought otherwise.
"Scared of Pek, that's what happened," Amundson said, referring to Wednesday's game when big Nikola Pekovic muscled Hibbert at every term and got him out of the game for good in the middle of the third quarter after Hibbert picked up his fifth foul.
Not sure if Pacers starting point guard George Hill will play. He missed the game in Fargo as well.
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