The nearly-healthy Minnesota Timberwolves visit a struggling Detroit Pistons team Tuesday night in hopes to continue the Pistons’ current four-game home losing streak. Meanwhile, the Wolves are looking to win their first pair of back-to-back in over a year after blowing out the Phoenix Suns on Friday.
For the Timberwolves, tonight will be another opportunity to provide head coach Rick Adelman with a look at a nearly healthy squad. Aside from guard Brandon Roy and forward Kevin Love, the Wolves’ core is intact. Both center Nikola Pekovic and forward Andrei Kirilenko finally came back from injury last week and have provided Minnesota with a little extra energy, especially defensively.
Ricky Rubio has continued to have success since returning from an ACL injury earlier this year. From a 10-game streak with over 40 steals to several double-doubles in points and assists, Rubio has been spectacular even though not feeling 100 percent healthy.
Derrick Williams has also shown promise of becoming Minnesota’s go-to guy down the stretch, coming alive in many games as it gets later on in the contests. Sunday against the Chicago Bulls, he scored 23 points in the second half and finished with a career-high 28. Against a sorry Pistons team tonight, he should enjoy success if he decides to act as the aggressor early on.
If the Wolves thought their season was going horribly wrong, they should have a little chat with Detroit about their other streak that was ended with a victory over the Charlotte Bobcats on Saturday. Previous to that victory, Detroit had dropped 11 straight overall.
This will surely be a battle of two teams that have a bad taste in their mouths due to many losses on the year. Several players on each squad would like to prove they belong on their respective roster going into next season, as it is more than likely both rosters will see somewhat of a face lift before the 2013-2014 season begins.