Souhan: Notoriety of Wolves' 'curse' evolves into cautionary international legend

  • Article by: JIM SOUHAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 17, 2012 - 10:04 PM

Scene: Andrei Kirilenko's apartment, Minneapolis, Wednesday night.

Present: Kirilenko and Alexey Shved

Setting: The fellow Russians and Timberwolves teammates sit on Kirilenko's couch. Kirilenko sips vodka. Shved sucks a Shirley Temple through his braces.

Shved: I can't believe Kevin Love hurt his hand working out.

Kirilenko: I can.

Shved: Why do you say that?

Kirilenko: I played in the NBA. I should have known.

Shved: Should have known what?

Kirilenko: That the Minnesota Timberwolves are cursed. Yes, they are silly at times. They are also cursed.

Alexey, this is a team that had a chance to get Shaquille O'Neal and wound up with Christian Laettner. That's like expecting a Mercedes for your birthday and getting a Segway. Most of this team's first-round draft choices work at Wal-Mart, stocking the high shelves. I should never have brought you here.

Shved: I think you are making too much of this. Be happy! This is a nice town, we have a good coach, and we still have good players. Have you seen Brandon Roy in practice? How about Pekovic? He looks like he wants to remove my spleen, but if you look close, his skull tattoos spell out "Twinkletoes."

Kirilenko: As the peasants say in our country, an optimist is one who knows too little. Brandon is great, yes, but he has less cartilage in his knees than I have fat on my elbows. Big Pek is promising, but we came here to play with Kevin Love.

Kevin hurt himself working out. That doesn't happen everywhere, Alexey. You have to understand, this franchise has been around since 1989 and has won two playoff series.

They traded Ray Allen for Stephon Marbury. They traded Roy for Randy Foye.

They drafted Kevin Garnett ... and he won a championship after he left.

They drafted Ricky Rubio ... and he got hurt just when he had everyone in the Twin Cities saving up for the Spanish version of Rosetta Stone.

Shved: You are making too much of this. Every team makes mistakes and suffers injuries.

Kirilenko: This team used a first-round draft pick on Ndudi Ebi.

Shved: Please take me home.

Kirilenko: I had heard of the Curse of Joey Two-Step, but I did not believe, not until now.

Shved: Joey who?

Kirilenko: Joey Two-Step. He was an entertainer in the franchise's early years. He became too amorous for the taste of many women employees, and the team let him go.

That day, he said, "Curse you, Timberwolves. No one fires Joey Two-Step. I am putting the hex on you!''

Shved: You should have told me about this Joey Two-Step.

Andrei, you are my idol, but I cannot listen to you anymore. I will play point guard while Rubio is out, and you will get more minutes while Love is out, and when they come back, we will be strong as Russian bear.

Kirilenko: I like your attitude. You must have been smuggled across the border. You are too sun-shiny to be Russian.

I'm sorry, it is my job as your elder to make sure you understand. This is a team that was severely penalized for making an under-the-table deal with Joe Smith.

Shved: Who?

Kirilenko: Exactly.

This is a team that brought in Sam Cassell and Latrell Sprewell and expected them to act like grown men. This is a team that thought Jonny Flynn could play defense and Wes Johnson could dribble.

This is a team that lost Terrell Brandon to injuries, and dumped Chauncey Billups before he became a star. For point guards, this is the Bemidji Triangle.

Shved: You are scaring me.

Andrei, do not worry. We have Brandon and Chase and Pek and Derrick Williams. We are Russians. We know how to survive a cold winter.

Kirilenko: OK, Alexey. This does remind me of another Russian saying. "If you live among wolves you must howl like a wolf."

Shved: What does that mean, Andrei?

Kirilenko: It means I want you to wear this Kevlar body and garlic necklace everywhere you go. You are a Timberwolf now. You must watch your step.

Jim Souhan can be heard Sundays from 10 a.m. to noon and weekdays at 2 p.m. on 1500-AM. His Twitter name is SouhanStrib. • jsouhan@startribune.com

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Buffalo 12/28/14 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Dallas 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Washington
Indianapolis 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Jacksonville 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Chicago 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Philadelphia 12/28/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Atlanta
Detroit 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Denver
Arizona 12/28/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Cincinnati 12/28/14 7:30 PM
Pittsburgh
TBA 1/3/15 2:00 AM
TBA
TBA 1/3/15 2:00 AM
TBA
Toronto 110 FINAL
LA Clippers 98
Boston 88 FINAL
Washington 101
Orlando 102 FINAL
Charlotte 94
Memphis 103 FINAL
Miami 95
Indiana 110 FINAL
Brooklyn 85
New Orleans 100 FINAL
Chicago 107
Atlanta 90 4th Qtr 0:12
Milwaukee 83
Philadelphia 55 3rd Qtr 0:06
Utah 59
New York 41 2nd Qtr 4:52
Sacramento 51
Minnesota 19 1st Qtr 4:19
Golden State 19
NY Islanders 3 FINAL(SO)
Buffalo 4
Detroit 3 FINAL(OT)
Ottawa 2
Carolina 1 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
New Jersey 1 FINAL
NY Rangers 3
Boston 2 FINAL
Columbus 6
Winnipeg 4 FINAL(OT)
Minnesota 3
Washington 3 FINAL
Pittsburgh 0
Dallas 4 FINAL
St. Louis 3
Philadelphia 1 FINAL
Nashville 4
Anaheim 1 FINAL(SO)
Arizona 2
Chicago 3 3rd Prd
Colorado 2
Edmonton 0 2nd Prd
Calgary 3
San Jose 1 2nd Prd
Los Angeles 1
Indiana 87 FINAL
Georgetown 91
Maine 43 FINAL
Seton Hall 72
UNC-Wilmington 82 FINAL
Minnesota 108
Georgia State 61 FINAL
Green Bay 78
Jacksonville St 61 FINAL
Jacksonville 75
Kentucky 58 FINAL
Louisville 50
Northern Ky 55 FINAL
Northwestern 76
UAB 58 FINAL
North Carolina 89
IUPUI 55 FINAL
Pepperdine 53
Santa Clara 60 FINAL
St Marys-CA 73
Oakland 56 FINAL
Maryland 72
Gonzaga 87 FINAL
BYU 80
Mercer 77 FINAL
Georgia 86
San Francisco 77 FINAL
Pacific 71
Wright State 55 FINAL
Ohio State 100
Presbyterian 65 FINAL
Virginia Tech 87
Brescia 42 FINAL
Western Ky 89
Tennessee St 46 FINAL
Tennessee 67
Kennesaw St 45 2nd Half 2:40
Illinois 88
Colorado State 48 2nd Half 1:12
New Mexico St 48
Portland 61 FINAL
San Diego 58
Wayland Baptist 63 FINAL
Utah State 75
Bristol University 59 FINAL
Weber State 109
Sacramento St 74 FINAL
Utah Valley U 49
Southern Utah 28 2nd Half
UNLV 36
SD Christian 20 2nd Half
San Diego St 38
Illinois 18 FINAL
Louisiana Tech 35
Rutgers 40 FINAL
North Carolina 21
NC State 34 FINAL
UCF 27
Cincinnati 17 FINAL
Virginia Tech 33
(15) Arizona State 36 FINAL
Duke 31
Miami-Florida 21 FINAL
So Carolina 24
Boston College 30 FINAL
Penn State 31
(25) Nebraska 24 3rd Qtr 5:49
(24) USC 38
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Texas
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
Stanford
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
Minnesota
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
Houston 1/2/15 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Iowa 1/2/15 2:20 PM
Tennessee
(11) Kansas State 1/2/15 5:45 PM
(14) UCLA
Washington 1/2/15 9:15 PM
Oklahoma State
East Carolina 1/3/15 11:00 AM
Florida
SMU 45 FINAL
(2) Connecticut 96
UCF 64 FINAL
Houston 50
BYU 62 FINAL
Gonzaga 78
Pacific 92 FINAL
San Francisco 54
St Marys-CA 62 FINAL
Santa Clara 61
San Diego 87 FINAL
Portland 65
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

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

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close