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News » Minnesota Timberwolves Notes, Quotes 2009-10-16

Minnesota Timberwolves Notes, Quotes 2009-10-16

Minnesota Timberwolves Notes, Quotes 2009-10-16--Here's a question among many about these remade (again) Timberwolves:

Might their new coaching staff be tougher than the team?

"Well," forward Al Jefferson said with a pregnant pause, "they think they are." Head coach Kurt Rambis searched for assistants who aspire to be head coaches and came up with three who already have been in either the NBA or WNBA: Bill Laimbeer, Reggie Theus and Dave Wohl.

All three also played in the NBA, although of the 12 players with guaranteed contracts currently in uniform, only Brian Cardinal was born when Theus and Laimbeer entered the league as players.

"They always talk about 30 years ago," Jefferson said with a straight face. "I tell them, 'Y'all got to stop living in the past. Y'all's time is over with.' I think they get caught up in it, especially my man Bill over there. He (doesn't) stop with 'I used to do this' and 'I used to do that.' Well, that's over."

Laimbeer elbowed and irritated, flailed and flopped during a 14-year NBA playing career in which he won consecutive titles with the Pistons and reached the All-Star Game four times.

Just as he always did way back when, Laimbeer's face contorted in disbelief when told about Jefferson's claim.

"Golly, that's not true," said Laimbeer, who is coaching in the NBA for the first time after leading the WNBA's Detroit Shock to three championships in his seven full seasons as head coach. "I try not to do that. The players don't want to hear what was, they just want to hear what is. Most of them know what we've accomplished. That gives us about a five-minute head start on credibility."

--When he drafted Ricky Rubio and Jonny Flynn fifth and sixth overall, David Kahn promised both point guards could, and would, play together some in the same backcourt.

When Rubio refused the Wolves' buyout agreement with his Spanish team and chose to say in Barcelona for at least the next two years, Kahn quickly signed restricted free-agent point guard Ramon Sessions and said Sessions and Flynn, too, could play tougher some.

Nearly halfway through preseason, Sessions and Flynn had played together only in bits of training-camp scrimmages. They haven't been played together in any of the team's first three games because Kurt Rambis said he didn't like what he saw of the combination in those scrimmages.

Instead, the two players have split time at point guard exclusively.

"Right now, I'm not big on it," Rambis said. "That may change in the future, but I'm not big on it. We looked at it a little in practice. I didn't go, 'Ooh.' I went, 'Ehh.'"

MAIN REASON TIMBERWOLVES CAN WIN: Al Jefferson and Kevin Love, the two building blocks David Kahn kept from the Kevin McHale era, are double-double guys who should be a dangerous inside-outside offensive combination who also won't leave many rebounds free off the backboards.

MAIN REASON TIMBERWOLVES CAN LOSE: Al Jefferson and Kevin Love, the two building blocks David Kahn kept from the Kevin McHale era, are power forwards who combined just might be too suspect defensively to ever play successfully together on a playoff team.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "Kevin surely could have coached the team. My gut tells me he wouldn't have been happy coaching it, which is part of why I made the decision I made." -- New Wolves boss David Kahn, who hired Kurt Rambis rather than bring Kevin McHale back as coach after trading Randy Foye, Mike Miller, Craig Smith, Sebastian Telfair and Mark Madsen. All were players McHale acquired for the Wolves when he made all the team's personnel decisions.

Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: October 16, 2009


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