The Wolves play Toronto tonight at Target Center in their final game before a nine-day All Star break and they will do so without veteran and starting small forward Tayshaun Prince.
The team gave Prince permission to miss this morning's shootaround and tonight's game so he can be in Detroit tonight when the Pistons retire former teammate Chauncey Billups' jersey.
Someone on Twitter asked me if that's normal, to miss a day's work to attend such a ceremony. No, it's not normal. It's probably a thank you instead for the minutes and effort Prince has given this season at age 35.
We'll see if Sam Mitchell starts LaVine at shooting guard and Andrew Wiggins at small forward or start Shabazz Muhammad in Prince's place. That Muhammad-for-Prince substitution is one a lot of Wolves fans have wanted anyway.
(UPDATE, 6:12 pm: The Wolves will start LaVIne beside Ricky Rubio in the frontcourt and move Wiggins to Prince's small-forward spot. Mitchell said they gave Prince permission to go to Detroit because he has done everything they've asked him to do this season and because it allows the chance to see LaVine in a starting role and presumably affords Muhammad more minutes.)
Prince's absence will leave the Wolves tonight without hium, Kevin Garnett, Nikola Pekovic and Kevin Martin against a Raptors team that won 11 consecutive games in January and is second in the Eastern Conference.
After this, the Raptors head home for break and the All-Star Game held in their hometown.
Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry will start for the East in Sunday's main event and shooting guard DeMar DeRozan was chosen by NBA coaches as a reserve.
"It means a lot, to have two guys in the same city be All Stars," DeRozan said. "I mean, words can't explain it. I probably need to be asked that this Sunday to get the feeling of it and see how it goes. Something like is something for the history books that you'll never forget. Hopefully we can inspire some young kid from Toronto to do the same thing we did."