The Minnesota Timberwolves are living proof that if you keep drafting in the Top 5 enough times you're eventually going to be pretty solid in spite of KAAAAAHHHHHNNN at the forefront of their masthead.
Have you forgotten yet? Here's my favorite brief summary from Grantland..
Minnesota paid $19 million for four years for J.J. Barea, making him the third free agent point guard in three years that they've signed for at least $16 million (even though they spent three first-round picks on point guards over that same timeframe) and giving them three point guards for the 2011-12 season. I don't know what to tell you.
And no matter how good Ricky Rubio has been, and he's been sensational so far, they still had Ty Lawson too for a little while.
Song of the Day: Anthem for the Unwanted - New Found Glory
May my favorite song becomes yours..
Cleveland Cavaliers (3-3) at Minnesota Timberwolves (2-4)
It sure looks like Kevin Love has found a running mate early in Rubio in the Rick Adelman era in Minnesota. K-Love has definitely taken his game to a new level this season as he's been truly dominant in ushering in this new era of exciting basketball in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. He has become so adept at sneakily knocking down a couple triples per game while maintaining his menacing rate on the glass.
As someone who has watched tons of Wolves games over the years I can tell you right now that the minute they are serious playoff contenders (for the eight seed) is the minute they get Michael Beasley out of his starting role and Derrick Williams becomes productive playing over 30 minutes per game. Seriously, it is so baffling why Beasley plays. It's all reputation at this point.
Rubio and the underrated Luke Ridnour will be yet another tough test for young Kyrie Irving. With the excitement in Minnesota at a recent high this is actually a pretty difficult place to play these days. The Wolves lost tough ones at home to Oklahoma City, Miami and Memphis already in Minneapolis while defeating both Dallas and San Antonio.
Cleveland - Semih Erden (left thumb)
Minnesota - J.J. Barea (right hamstring)
Antwan Jamison vs. Kevin Love
I'm not yet sure if the national public has quite yet picked up on how good the young Love has been this year and last season as well. He's 4th in the league in PER so far and is an even bet it seems for a 23-14 game every single night. Jamison will be giving up size in this one and having him given the job of shadowing Love for most of the night scares me because K-Love is underrated at moving without the ball for a big man. He's great at setting up behind the arc for a three and is fantastic at positioning himself under the rim for offensive rebounds and tips.
Fear the Sword's Fearless Prediction:
I'm actually making the trek out to the Target Center for the game tonight in what will be my first career Cavaliers game. In past years it would have been obvious for me to pick a blowout victory when the Cavs were in the Twin Cities but things are different with Love, Rubio and Williams forming one of the most young, dynamic trios in The Association. I'll go with Minnesota winning 96-88.