MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — You could feel it at practice when the Minnesota Wolves returned home this week. This post-season thing intensifies.
“The big thing is you go game to game. And you know, the biggest thing is the aggressiveness, and that was, I thought, Chris Paul’s biggest adjustment,” said Head Coach Tom Thibodeau. “It’s playoff basketball, and that’s, you got to play for 48 minutes, there’s a physicality to it.”
Saturday night is about defending James Harden, because it’s always about defending James Harden.
“He’s always in attack mode, you know, and he can just do a lot,” said Timberwolves small forward Andrew Wiggins. “It can go both ways. Great shooter, you know, great, crazy, crazy on shot, and … in the paint, you don’t know what he’s going to do.”
The irony so far is that the Wolves have been better on defense than on offense.
“We never dealt with a struggle, really, offensively, so it’s a little different for us,” said Wolves point guard Jeff Teague. “But I mean, I think our defense has been good enough to win games, but … our offense hasn’t, but you got to make shots.”
Because this time it is different — it’s the playoffs.
“We finish one game out of the fourth spot, I’m proud of what they’ve done, and now our challenge is to win this next game,” Thibodeau said.