MILWAUKEE - Throughout training camp, the Timberwolves preached about all the good "vibes" that permeated their offseason. Nothing can test good vibes like a little bit of losing, and the Wolves wasted little time putting their cohesiveness as a team on the line following just their first loss of the season.

Anthony Edwards wasn't afraid to speak out following Monday's loss to the Pelicans — and he wasn't afraid to criticize some of his older, max-contract teammates in Karl-Anthony Towns and D'Angelo Russell.

The Wolves also have Patrick Beverley, who will always speak his mind no matter how blunt his words may be. Accountability and leadership were a question around this Wolves team entering this season, but at least early on, there seems to be room for all voices to speak up when they have something to say. Players from Edwards to Josh Okogie, Naz Reid and Jarred Vanderbilt have all said the volume has been turned up this season and players are no longer afraid to call each other out.

"I feel like we've taken a big step from that last year," Reid said. "Pat has something to say and we're just listening, or D-Lo or Kat or whoever. The next guy is just listening, and he tries to apply it to the game, because it's going to help us win.

"We all want to win, so don't take it any hard way. [A teammate] might say it differently or in a way that you might not like, but he just wants it better for you so we can all win."

Reid said he has felt more empowered to talk during practices or games but said you must also be able to back up your words in order to talk.

"I feel as though you have all the room in the world if you're doing your job," Reid said. "You can't try to hold someone else accountable if you're not doing what you're supposed to do. That being said, as long as I'm doing what I'm supposed to do day in and day out, just like I believe that they are, then I would be able to do that."

Age also doesn't matter in these situations, it appears. Especially with Edwards, who is going to say what he wants even if he is only 20. Edwards never struck such a critical tone in any public comments last season as he did Monday.

"That's who Ant is," Okogie said. "He says what's on his mind. You guys have seen all the funny stuff that he says. That's the kind of guy he is. Whether it's funny, real, whatever it is, whatever is on his mind, he'll get it out."

The trick is that the Wolves have to hold each other accountable without fracturing relationships and breaking the team apart. The Jimmy Butler experience was an example of how that might go awry. Wednesday's game against Milwaukee was a test of this dynamic in light of a "testy" practice on Tuesday. They seemed to pass the test with a 113-108 wire-to-wire win over the defending champions.

Towns said the talkative culture is a welcome one.

"That's something I've always wanted … " Towns said. "Everyone's a leader on this team, everyone has a part on this team, everyone has a key role. I want everyone to voice their opinions."

That doesn't seem like it's going to stop. How the Wolves handle it can help make or break the season.

"I'd rather have that than guys that don't care, that aren't saying anything and they're not bothered, then winning doesn't mean enough to you," coach Chris Finch said.

  • The Wolves assigned rookie Leandro Bolmaro to their G-League affiliate in Iowa. Bolmaro, a first-round pick in 2020, will be working on his shooting form in Iowa.