So far, both Robert Covington and Dario Saric appear to have hit the ground running since joining the Wolves in the Jimmy Butler trade.
Both have helped the defense, with Saric coming off the bench. And the two have combined to hit 17 of the team’s 38 three-pointers in the last three games.
But, off the court, it has been a challenge. A mid-season trade means finding a new place to live, getting your possessions moved to Minnesota as well as finding a rhythm with a new team.
So far, it appears Saric has found a new place while Covington is still looking. The Wolves finish a five-game homestand tonight against Denver at Target Center. Being able to join a team that spent nearly two weeks in one placed helped a lot. With travel not getting in the way, the Wolves were able to get a number of practices in, and both players got a feel for their new city.
“I’m starting to settle in a little more,’’ Covington said after shootaround this morning. “I’ve narrowed down [potential homes] and I’m working on trying to get everything from Philadelphia here. That won’t be done until December, because of my lease and trying to get movers set up. But I’m starting to get acclimated, started to settle down a little bit. Them being at home allowed us to settle in. It was definitely the right time.’’
Not all has returned to normal. Covington said he is a compulsive watcher of film. It’s one of the reasons, he said, that he’s been able to grow as a defender in the league. He still watches a lot, but hasn’t had the time to settle into his two- or three-times-a-day film-watching schedule yet.
--Perhaps because the roster is so different, there hasn’t been a lot of reminiscing about last year’s final regular season game, an overtime victory over Denver that put the Wolves into the playoffs for the first time since 2004.
Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau was asked about it this morning.
“I think it was a big game for our players, for our organization,’’ he said. “But last year is last year. And you start all over again. Hopefully we can build off of that. But the night itself? It was a great night in the building, the emotion of the building, the emotion of our players. It was a hard-fought game. It was a great game.’’
--Thibodeau was asked what he was thankful for.
“Everything,’’ he said. “You know, we’re all blessed to be doing what we do. And so, when you think about the challenges you have, you really don’t have any. So it’s all the things, the people you’re around, your family, all the things you’ve been blessed with. So it’s a time to reflect.’’