The injury bug has been the constant nemesis to the Minnesota Timberwolves over last season and even leading into the 2013-14 NBA season. While they made a lot of necessary moves to add depth in free agency this summer, they were still hurt by the loss of re-signed wing Chase Budinger with a knee injury in the preseason that kept him sidelined to start the year.
While Budinger has been out, though, the Wolves have been rolling. The teams sits at a solid 6-3 right now, Kevin Love is playing like the MVP of the league, Kevin Martin seems right at home in Minnesota, and the team’s offense looks like one of the best in the league. However, they still need Budinger back in the lineup for one big reason: their shaky bench.
Though you can praise Minnesota’s start to this season for a number of reasons, their bench has been awful. I dedicated a few hundred words to it recently because it’s been an atrocity. It’s not been just a few players that have been disappointing, but rather the unit as a whole putting the Wolves in a sticky situation at times. Budinger’s return would, ideally, give the Wolves some consistent production from their reserves and possibly bring the unit together as well.
Luckily for the Wolves, Budinger’s return may be sooner than most people expected from the onset of his injury. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, Budinger has been cleared to rejoin the team and “resume basketball activities.” Though he still has no return date for getting back in the lineup, being cleared is obviously a big first step for the forward.
Minnesota has done more than survive without Budinger in the lineup. In fact, the Wolves have been thriving. However, they could legitimately wind up being one of the five best teams in the conference if their bench improves going forward. When Budinger returns which seems to be soon, that might be just what happens for this team.
See if Chase Budinger’s return to Minnesota could have a huge impact on the team as he brings some much needed offense to the team and get your Timberwolves tickets today.