After their win over Golden State on Thursday night, the Timberwolves attended to some necessary business before heading home — getting their second doses of COVID vaccine.
Instead of getting it the following day, the Wolves got the shot after the game Thursday to try to maximize their recovery time from potential side effects as Saturday's game against New Orleans approached.
Coach Chris Finch, who said he "personally felt a little bit more of an effect," said it was a "mixed bag" how players felt afterward, but most were fine at shootaround Saturday.
"Some guys felt it, some guys were OK," Finch said. "Nobody was reporting anything untoward today at shootaround. Maybe a little tired."
Center Karl-Anthony Towns showed off his Band-Aid from his shot after Thursday's win during his media video conference.
"We got it done. So I love it," Towns said. "I'm excited to be fully vaccinated finally. I've said it before and will say it again, I think it's important for all of us to get vaccinated if we want to see life come back to normal, we all gotta make the sacrifice and make the effort to go get the vaccine."
On a video the Wolves posted to social media, rookie Anthony Edwards was teasing forward Jarred Vanderbilt about the potential side effects and how sick he might feel afterward.
"I felt it a little bit [Friday]," Vanderbilt said. "A little headache and a little body ache, but it wasn't as bad as Ant was talking about."
Vanderbilt said at first he was "skeptical" about getting the vaccines, but he was glad he did it.
"Once I got it, I felt good about it, not only for me but for the people around me," Vanderbilt said. "I was trying to make a safer environment for all of us. I feel good about it. It was a little bit of a sigh of relief."
Parallels to Phoenix?
Guard Ricky Rubio played with the Suns last season when Phoenix went 8-0 in the NBA bubble in Florida but still missed the playoffs. It helped as a springboard for the Suns, who are now competing for the top seed in the Western Conference.
But Rubio doesn't exactly see a direct comparison between Phoenix and the Wolves, who won four straight entering Saturday. The Suns were playing for their playoff lives. The Wolves aren't.
"Pressure is off," Rubio said. "We had to do it [in Phoenix] when the pressure is on."
That will be a test for the Wolves next season if they can finish this year on a high note, he said.
"We did it with the pressure on because we couldn't lose any of the games to make it happen and it still didn't happen," Rubio said. "And it's a little different because I felt like last season it was like two seasons in one season."
Finch compliments Davis
Veteran Ed Davis hasn't played much at all the second half of the season and has usually only played when games are out of hand. But Finch said Davis' voice remains important on a young team.
"Extremely professional approach," Finch said. "Very even keel. His messaging is simple and direct. Nonthreatening in his tone and approach to guys and what I mean is that the guys respect him in a way and he's not trying to impose himself too much on what's going on, but when he speaks it's always meaningful."