Wolves lose in Portland, still can't get over the .500 hump

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 26, 2014 - 9:23 AM

The Wolves failed to get over .500 for the 10th time since Thanksgiving.

 

– Just when the Timberwolves rid themselves of one statistical anomaly, another old one popped up again with Saturday night’s 115-104 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers.

One night after they won their first game decided by four points or fewer all season, the Wolves missed their 10th chance since the night before Thanksgiving to push themselves over .500 into winning territory and couldn’t do so on a night when they were battered and bruised and overmatched by the league’s most surprising success story so far this season.

“Well, it’s a back-to-back game against one of the best teams in the league,” Wolves coach Rick Adelman said afterward. “It’s not going to be an easy game.”

And it certainly wasn’t.

Adelman tried to find some rest of hurting starters Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio, but had to keep calling upon both as well as Kevin Martin for his scoring in a game when the disparity between the starters and the team’s bench proved problematic yet again.

– one that opened the second quarter, the other that arrived midway through the fourth quarter – that pushed the Blazers to their first double-digit lead and then allowed them to stretch an 89-84 lead with 10 minutes left into an 105-88 bulge with 5 ½ minutes left.

– tried to keep them close. But with Love playing on a sore knee he banged Friday in Oakland and Rubio playing on a sprained ankle sustained there as well, Adelman couldn’t keep them on the floor long enough to counter a Blazers team that got 16 points from veteran reserve guard Mo Williams as well as valuable bench contributions from Thomas Robinson and rookie C.J. McCollum.

“Just trying to stay in the game,” Adelman said.

Another Love-LaMarcus Aldridge matchup at power forward turned into what Love called “much ado about nothing,” the two nearly canceling each other out while teammates assumed center stage. Love was limited to a 15-point, 13-rebound night both because of what he called the Blazers’ commitment to take him out of the offense and by pain after he had banged knees with Golden State’s Harrison Barnes the night before.

“This morning was one of those times when you jump out of bed and you think I don’t how I’m going to play tonight,” Love said. “But you muster up the energy to get do so: Get a good meal, get a good nap and lace them up and hopefully the adrenaline flows, which I think it did for some of us.”

Afterward, Rubio sat at his locker soaking his ankle in ice while his left hand was wrapped in ice as well as he said he hurt it Friday in Oakland. He played 37 minutes, Love 36 and Martin more than 41 when Chase Budinger was the only reserve who played more than 12 minutes and that was due in part to Corey Brewer’s early foul trouble.

Backup guard J.J. Barea played fewer than 11 minutes, not because, according to Adelman, of a bruised back sustained Friday but rather because Adelman felt he needed to keep his starters on the floor to stay in the game.

“Hanging in there, you know,” Rubio said about his physical condition. “This is the NBA. You play almost every night and when you get hurt, either you sit down or you give whatever you have. I did tonight. I was feeling good. I keep playing.”

The Wolves haven’t been over .500 since they were 8-7 on Nov. 23. Ten times since then, they have pushed their way to even and each time they have fallen back.

“It was tough today against a good team after back-to-back,” Rubio said. “We’re not looking where we’re at instead of our record. We just to get every night and play good and the record is going to come.”

________________________________________

  • related content

  • BOXSCORE: Portland 115, Wolves 104

    Sunday January 26, 2014

  • Souhan: Love can lead in stats, but can he lead the Wolves?

    Sunday January 26, 2014

    The All-Star Wolves forward is another local star struggling to lead a team to the playoffs.

  • Video: In the Locker Room: Wolves 3-game winning streak ends

    Sunday January 26, 2014

    Rick Adelman, Ricky Rubio and Kevin Love discuss 115-104 loss at Portland that ended a 3-game winning streak

  • Wolves notes: Rubio, Love, Barea play through pain

    Sunday January 26, 2014

    Starters Kevin Love, Ricky Rubio and backup point guard J.J. Barea played in Saturday’s 115-104 loss to the Trail Blazers after each came off the court limping the night before.

  • NBA Sunday Insider: Adelman a fan of Utah's Sloan

    Saturday January 25, 2014

    Earlier this month, Adelman taped a personal five-minute testimonial about his friend and competitor, calling Sloan the opposing coach he always respected most because his teams always were tough-minded and...

  • Wolves-Portland game recap

    Sunday January 26, 2014

    GAME RECAPImpact playerMo Williams, PortlandHe led the way for a Trail Blazers second unit that dominated Wolves reserves, scoring 16 points...

  • Portland Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge, right, battles for position with Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Portland, Ore., Saturday, Jan. 25, 2014. (AP Photo/Don Ryan)

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Tennessee 12/18/14 7:25 PM
Jacksonville
Philadelphia 12/20/14 3:30 PM
Washington
San Diego 12/20/14 7:25 PM
San Francisco
Minnesota 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Baltimore 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Houston
Detroit 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Chicago
Cleveland 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Atlanta 12/21/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Green Bay 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Kansas City 12/21/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
New England 12/21/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
NY Giants 12/21/14 3:05 PM
St. Louis
Buffalo 12/21/14 3:25 PM
Oakland
Indianapolis 12/21/14 3:25 PM
Dallas
Seattle 12/21/14 7:30 PM
Arizona
Denver 12/22/14 7:30 PM
Cincinnati
Atlanta 6:00 PM
Cleveland
Phoenix 6:00 PM
Charlotte
Dallas 6:30 PM
Detroit
Utah 6:30 PM
Miami
Orlando 6:30 PM
Boston
Brooklyn 7:00 PM
Toronto
Memphis 7:30 PM
San Antonio
Milwaukee 9:00 PM
Portland
Houston 9:30 PM
Denver
Indiana 9:30 PM
LA Clippers
Ottawa 6:00 PM
New Jersey
Boston 7:00 PM
Minnesota
Dallas 9:00 PM
Vancouver
Langston 65 FINAL
North Texas 78
Delaware State 2 1st Half 15:42
St Francis-NY 2
James Madison 6:00 PM
Ball State
SIU Edwardsville 6:00 PM
Campbell
St Francis-PA 6:00 PM
Duquesne
North Florida 6:00 PM
Florida State
Catawba 6:00 PM
George Mason
Ferrum 6:00 PM
High Point
Hampton 6:00 PM
Illinois
Gardner-Webb 6:00 PM
Jacksonville
Longwood 6:00 PM
Miami-Ohio
Arkansas State 6:00 PM
Miss State
Tennessee 6:00 PM
NC State
NC A&T 6:00 PM
Ohio State
Manhattan 6:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Robert Morris 6:00 PM
Toledo
Char Southern 6:00 PM
Wofford
Kennesaw St 6:00 PM
Youngstown St
Barber-Scotia 6:00 PM
NC Central
Detroit 6:30 PM
UCF
Liberty 6:30 PM
UNC-Wilmington
TX A&M-CC 7:00 PM
Denver
Ark-Pine Bluff 7:00 PM
Houston
UT Martin 7:00 PM
Illinois State
Milligan 7:00 PM
Louisiana
Abilene Christian 7:00 PM
Loyola-Chicago
USC Upstate 7:00 PM
Memphis
Alcorn State 7:00 PM
Murray State
Central Mich 7:00 PM
Northwestern
Georgia State 7:00 PM
Old Dominion
TX-Pan American 7:00 PM
Saint Louis
Ill-Chicago 7:00 PM
SMU
Texas State 7:00 PM
Stephen F Austin
SC State 7:00 PM
Texas Tech
Missouri State 7:00 PM
Tulsa
Chicago State 7:00 PM
Western Ky
Morehead State 7:00 PM
Green Bay
Northern Colorado 7:00 PM
Nebraska Omaha
Winthrop 8:00 PM
Auburn
New Mexico St 8:00 PM
Baylor
San Diego St 8:00 PM
Cincinnati
Eastern Mich 8:00 PM
Michigan State
Loyola Marymount 8:00 PM
Stanford
Incarnate Word 8:00 PM
Grand Canyon
Northeastern 9:00 PM
Cal Poly
Central Arkansas 9:00 PM
New Mexico
Howard 9:00 PM
Pepperdine
Portland 9:30 PM
UNLV
CS-Northridge 10:00 PM
Oregon
Grambling St 10:00 PM
Washington
Nevada 12/20/14 10:00 AM
Louisiana
Utah State 12/20/14 1:20 PM
Texas-El Paso
(23) Utah 12/20/14 2:30 PM
Colorado State
Western Mich 12/20/14 4:45 PM
Air Force
South Alabama 12/20/14 8:15 PM
Bowling Green
BYU 12/22/14 1:00 PM
Memphis
Marshall 12/23/14 5:00 PM
Northern Ill
Navy 12/23/14 8:30 PM
San Diego St
Central Mich 12/24/14 11:00 AM
Western Ky
Fresno State 12/24/14 7:00 PM
Rice
Western Carolina 79 FINAL
UNC-Asheville 66
(21) Miss State 66 FINAL
Louisiana 51
(25) DePaul 109 FINAL
Loyola-Chicago 84
Liberty 64 FINAL
NC State 67
Elon 54 2nd Half 13:34
Campbell 37
Akron 3:30 PM
UCF
Richmond 3:30 PM
UNC-Wilmington
Montana 4:00 PM
Seattle
(7) Stanford 5:00 PM
Chattanooga
Florida A&M 5:30 PM
Southern U
Oklahoma 5:30 PM
(13) Duke
Savannah State 5:30 PM
Auburn
Northern Colorado 6:00 PM
South Florida
Youngstown St 6:00 PM
Robert Morris
Siena 6:00 PM
Sacred Heart
Vermont 6:00 PM
St Francis-NY
(1) South Carolina 6:00 PM
Hampton
Fla Gulf Coast 6:00 PM
Bethune-Cookman
Texas Southern 6:00 PM
Houston Baptist
Northwestern 6:00 PM
UNLV
NC A&T 6:00 PM
Appalachian St
NC Central 6:00 PM
Coastal Carolina
Drexel 6:00 PM
Quinnipiac
Cincinnati 6:00 PM
Northern Ky
Alabama State 6:00 PM
Georgia Tech
Morehead St 6:00 PM
USC Upstate
Arkansas State 6:00 PM
Kent State
American Univ 6:00 PM
Manhattan
UNC Greensboro 6:00 PM
St Bonaventure
Arkansas-Monticello 6:30 PM
Northwestern St
Prairie View 6:30 PM
Sam Houston St
McNeese State 7:00 PM
(3) Texas
Yale 7:00 PM
Wagner
Oakland 7:00 PM
TX A&M-CC
Eastern Kentucky 7:00 PM
Alabama A&M
SIU-Edwardsville 7:00 PM
Northern Ill
McMurry 7:00 PM
TX-Arlington
Portland 8:00 PM
Eastern Washington
North Texas 9:00 PM
San Francisco

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who is your favorite pro sports coach in the Twin Cities?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close