Pretty much all you needed to know about tonight’s loss to Charlotte can be seen in one column of the box score from the Hornets’ 104-95 win.
I’m not a huge fan of the plus-minus rating. So much of that stat has to do with the players someone plays with. That said, check out tonight’s plus-minus ratings:
Wolves starters: Tayshaun Prince, Adreian Payne and Zach LaVine all plus-13. Karl-Anthony Towns and Kevin Martin both plus-10.
Wolves reserves: Tyus Jones minus-23. Nemanja Bjelica and Shabazz Muhammad both minus-21. Gorgui Dieng minus-20. Andrew Miller minus-9.
The Wolves bench has been a strength all season. But, with Ricky Rubio and Andrew Wiggins both out with sore knees, and with Kevin Garnett resting, three normal bench players – Payne, Martin and LaVine – became starters. And the Wolves bench, suddenly, became pretty lean.
The starters weren’t perfect, but they played well enough to win. But the bench was out-scored 57-23.
Here are some other thoughts on the game.
--Wolves coach Sam Mitchell said he didn’t know whether Rubio or Wiggins would be available Thursday for the game against Golden State at Target Center. More will be known after both receive treatment Wednesday.
--Once again LaVine showed moments of brilliance and times when he struggled. He scored 20 points and had eight assists. But he also had eight of the Wolves’ 22 turnovers.
--Towns continues to be amazing. After the game Mitchell said he’s consistently impressed by what he asks of the rookie and what Towns is able to deliver. He’s had six games with three or more blocks and has five double-doubles in seven games.
--Jones had a difficult intro into the NBA. He had a hard time defending on the perimeter. But, with this game under his belt, I’d expect better going forward.
--This was LaVine’s 11th NBA game with 20 or more points.