NBA short takes

  • Updated: December 21, 2013 - 6:38 PM

Don’t do it, Wolves fans

Second-guessing their team’s draft decisions has become a favorite pastime for Timberwolves fans, who again wonder why the Wolves didn’t just take Michigan point guard Trey Burke when he dropped to them with the ninth pick last summer.

Instead, the Wolves worked a two-for-one deal with Utah for picks Nos. 14 and 21 that became Shabazz Muhammad and Gorgui Dieng, and the Jazz got Burke with that ninth pick.

Jazz fans are wondering about Burke, too: Like, would Utah’s season have turned out differently so far if Burke hadn’t broken his finger in October and if the Jazz hadn’t started the season 1-11 without him. Utah went 6-10 in his first 16 games back and he followed a 1-for-8 shooting night in Miami last week by scoring a career-high 30 points in Orlando two nights later.

He scored those 30 against a Magic team that includes fellow rookie Victor Oladipo, who was drafted second overall. “It gives me a little motivation going into those games,” Burke told the Salt Lake Tribune.

Barkley: Sit him down

Kobe Bryant’s latest injury, a fractured bone in his knee, will keep him out the next six weeks. TNT analyst Charles Barkley thinks it should be much longer for a 35-year-old player who missed this season’s start because of a torn Achilles’ tendon that ended his season last spring.

“Kobe Bryant shouldn’t play any more this year,” Barkley said on Thursday’s NBA doubleheader telecast. The Lakers “should shut him down. He is never going to be the same again. … He can be a good, solid player, but age has nothing to do with willpower.”

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