The Minnesota Timberwolves will miss their 5th game tonight, a home game against Derek Rose and the Chicago Bulls. The first game slated to be played is a home game against the Bucks on November 16th, 14 games after the season was supposed to start. In all likelihood, if the players union keeps sending Kevin Garnett to negotiate for them, we won’t be playing before December either. Downtown Minneapolis is already losing some of the $100 million the Wolves bring in each year, not to mention the NBA employees and arena vendors that are out of work. NBA writer’s are struggling too, as the Strib’s Michael Rand made national news for his fake NBA stories he is currently writing.
Where are the players in all of this? (Outside of sabotaging legitimate negotiations). Well, none of the stars have yet to go over seas to play despite their constant threats to do so. On-again-off-again-star Michael Beasley just hosted a charity game at Osseo high school. All Star Kevin Love keeps popping up, most recently saying, “It’s hard to pick a side when it’s billionaires fighting against millionaires.” Spanish phenom Ricky Rubio, in all likelihood, is wondering why he came over to the states so early, but he has to be excited about how Adelman as said he would allow Rubio to play. All the while Kahn and Adelman are dismissing talk that they hate each other, although the past always seems to have a knack for rearing its ugly head.
In the end, we may actually start games before 2012. The head of the NBA players’ union, Billy Hunter, now has a scapegoat in the federal mediator. Hunter has played this wrong over the last two months. Now he can slide out of this, save his multimillion dollar salary, and point to the mediator as the reason for the compromise from the players. We hope so. It’s not just Hunter that has played his cards wrong, however. The owners are to blame as well. They did not expect the apathetic response they would get from fans about missing 14 games. Most casual NBA fans shrugged their shoulders and moved on. (The season should be shortened by 14 games anyway, so losing these is not a big deal.) But now it’s time to get back and play.
We’re not expecting big things from the Wolves this year, but a more electric team and possibly 20 wins would be fun to see, (remember, it’s a shortened season). If nothing else, we here at TC Huddle just want to see our young guys on the court. We’ve been waiting for Rubio for 3 years, let’s get this final month over with.