In the three years I’ve been on the Timberwolves, I have seen KG make a lot of game-winning shots, but tonight was extra special because he added a game saving block! I wish I had footage of our locker room after the game that I could post here too! KG was chest bumping teammates and everyone in the locker room was screaming. KG was so physically and emotionally spent that he could hardly walk and so he’d muster enough energy to chest bump people hard, then he’d go back to recovering energy. In the locker room Coach Casey basically said that we needed to take this win and build on it and gain some momentum. Then he went up to the dry-erase board and wrote the names of the guys of the board who had to come in tomorrow at 3pm to “get some extra conditioning and to run through plays.” (We are scheduled to touch down tonight in Minneapolis at about 2am so it will be a rest day for the guys who played heavy minutes)
As KG passed my locker to go to the shower he laughed and said something like, “Man, I’m so wound up right now, I forgot to drink my protein shakes.” Then he went back a few feet and threw down a couple of protein/carb shakes that our strength trainer Thomas McKinney makes after every game for the guys who expend a lot of energy. I’m amazed that KG can play so hard night after night. He has amazing stamina.
It’s no secret that we had struggled mightily in the last few games, but once again there were a lot of positives tonight. Struggling in the NBA happens for every team. Even on a few of the Laker championship teams we had times where we got blown out and lost big.
Marcus Banks came through in a huge way. Steve Nash was going under our screen and roll and Marcus just kept on rising up and hitting his smooth jump shot. Justin Reed played really well too. When you watch games at home, I want you to notice Justin Reed. Justin is so quick it’s incredible and he ALWAYS plays hard and scraps. Again, Justin Reed is one of the strongest basketball players in the NBA. The other day in the weight room, he threw 225 up on the bench press easily for a lot of repetitions. Rashad had a huge game and I can never adequately express how much Anothony Carter means to this team on and off the court.
Our coaches changed things up a little bit today by keeping our shoot-around extremely short. Sometimes change is just good. We went over to the Suns’ arena and coach Casey called out “Bigs at one end, littles at the other.” We all got some shots up, ran a few plays then went through the scouting report and then got on the bus back to the hotel for some rest.
Right now we’re on the plane (it seems like I end up writing a lot from here). Most of us have already reviewed the game on DVD to see where we could have done better and where we could have made different offensive and defensive reads. In our back section of the plane there are two players still going over film on the DVD, there are three players in a friendly card game, three guys are asleep and three or four are on the portable playstation playing golf or soccer. As for me, I’ve got my headphones plugged in to my computer and I’m about ready to settle into a little itunes.com relaxation with a few old favorites.
“Time after Time” – Cyndi Lauper (This reminds me of the Napolean Dynamite scene at the high school dance…
“We Built This City” – Starship
“Dream Big” – Ryan Shupe and the Rubberband (a great song from an up-and-coming group)
“More Than a Feeling” – Boston
“These Days” — Rascal Flatts.
I hope everyone has a great day. MM