Playoff game Roy's turning point

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 31, 2012 - 9:41 PM

The last time the new Timberwolves guard played in an NBA game, he scored 18 points and rallied the Trail Blazers from an 18-point deficit.

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Portland's Brandon Roy celebrated after leading the Trail Blazers to an 84-82 victory over the Dallas Mavericks in Game 4 of their 2011 first-round playoff series.

Photo: Rick Bowmer, ASSOCIATED PRESS

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New Timberwolves guard Brandon Roy last played NBA games for Portland in April 2011. One of his final ones was an unforgettable Game 4 playoff performance against Dallas when he emerged from nowhere to scored 18 fourth-quarter points in an improbable first-round comeback victory from an 18-point deficit.

David Kahn, Wolves president of basketball operations, who is from Portland, attended that game with his son.

"It was one of those games where we never leave early, but we almost left early that day because they were so far behind," Kahn said.

Wolves assistant coach Bill Bayno was there as well, as a Blazers assistant.

"A magical night, I'll never forget it," Bayno said. "That night he was the old Brandon Roy. He just dominated the [eventual] NBA champions. He did everything. It was electric."

That performance helped Roy decide to make a comeback. It ranks among his most memorable NBA moments.

"It played a big part, not necessarily just that game but I felt good that series," he said. "That really helped with my decision to come back, just because of everything surrounding it, maybe doubting myself, not sure I could still play at that level. To go out and have that performance, it was pretty special."

More changes coming?

Kahn maintained Tuesday that he won't make any more personnel moves until after the Olympics and he knows Kevin Love, Andrei Kirilenko and Alexey Shved all have come through healthy.

But then...

"We've addressed some weaknesses, if not all of them, but I still want to see what we can do later in the summer," he said. "Maybe it's a tweak here and there, maybe even something big, to make us even better still."

What's in a number?

Roy will wear uniform No. 3 -- his college number at Washington -- rather than the No. 7 he wore in Portland, even though Wolves forward Derrick Williams offered that number in a recent tweet.

"No. 7 was the Portland era," Roy said, "but I appreciate the gesture."

The skinny on Shved

Bayno and fellow Wolves assistant Jack Sikma coached Shved at the annual June EuroCamp four years ago. Shved -- signed last week to a three-year, $10 million contract -- has impressed with his point-guard play for Russia in two London Olympic games so far.

"He's got the tools," Bayno said. "He's smart. He's skilled. He's shooting the ball better than when he was younger. He's got a ton of potential and he's starting to realize that."

Etc.

• Bayno will travel to Montenegro for two weeks in August to work with center Nikola Pekovic, who should be cleared by then for full-contact practice after undergoing May surgery to remove bone spurs from his ankle. Newly signed center Greg Stiemsma -- who will be officially introduced Thursday at Target Center -- will either work with Bayno and Pekovic in Montenegro or with Bayno in Los Angeles next month.

• Roy, when asked how his Russian, Serbian and Spanish is now that he has teammates Shved, Pekovic, Kirilenko and Ricky Rubio: "It's terrible. I'm looking forward to meeting all those guys. Me and Kirilenko, we had some battles when he was in Utah and I was in Portland. I'm not sure I'll learn Russian, but I'll learn where he likes to be on the floor."

• Bayno worked in Los Angeles with Brazilian center Paulao Prestes, a 2011 second-round pick, for two weeks before Las Vegas Summer League play. When asked if he's an NBA player, Bayno said, "I don't know about now. He's certainly tough enough. ... Down the road, he has a chance."

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