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New Face of Timberwolves Takes on the Old One: A Fan’s Take
Kevin Garnett was the first franchise face of the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Wolves have had their fair share of decent players, from Tony Campbell to Christian Laettner, but when people think of Minnesota Timberwolves superstars, Kevin Garnett usually is the first to come to mind. Garnett, who played for the Timberwolves twelve seasons before being traded to the Boston Celtics, has averaged over 19 points per game in his sixteen seasons.
When Garnett left the Timberwolves, years of poor play followed. The team struggled to find true leadership, shuffled through several coaches, and generally finished near the bottom of the NBA standings. Now, however, a new franchise face has emerged. Kevin Love has become everything the Minnesota Timberwolves needed. He is among the league leaders in scoring and rebounding, and he is ranked first among all NBA players in double-doubles. While he is not as explosive athletically as a LeBron James or Kevin Durant, his numbers cannot be ignored.
Now, the two best players in Minnesota Timberwolves history will face off at the Target Center. The Celtics and the Timberwolves find themselves on two opposite ends of the basketball spectrum. The Celtics are an extremely talented group that may be past its prime; the Timberwolves are still growing into a team that looks like it could be a Western Conference contender for years to come. While the Celtics might have their best years behind this core group, the Timberwolves look like their best years are still to come.
Kevin Garnett said he doesn't have much "positive" to say about the Minnesota franchise, which does not come as a surprise. Garnett failed to win a championship in Minnesota but quickly found success with the Celtics, who also featured Paul Pierce and Ray Allen in their championship run of 2008. The conversation about who leads the list of best Timberwolves of all time is likely to have him playing at the top of his game when the Celtics take the floor.
When the ball gets tipped up on Friday night, Minnesota fans will have a chance to recall what their franchise once was, and get a glimpse of what it will be. That, in itself, is reason enough to watch.
Jack Grunpe is an avid Minnesota Timberwolves fan.
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