The Wolves beat the Lakers 108-99 in Anaheim to open up preseason play on Saturday night.
Since we are in China, let’s make this quick. Here are three takeaways from the game:
Gibson working on his range
Newly-signed power forward Taj Gibson finished with 18 points and nine rebounds. Impressive, yes. But Gibson showed off his range, shooting 2-for-2 from the 3-point line.
To put that in perspective, going into this season, Gibson shot just 35 career 3-points and made four of them.
Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau said that Gibson didn’t have that type of range in Chicago – it was more of the 15-17 foot shots. But Gibson was bringing it from deep during training camp, and it’s probably something we’ll see more of in the regular season.
Doesn’t take long for him to get going
In his first game wearing a Timberwolves uniform, Jimmy Butler scored 10 points.
That doesn’t seem great for a guy who has averaged 20 points per game for the last three seasons.
Butler only played 12 minutes, shot 3-for-6 from the field and 4-for-5 from the free-throw line.
Those 12 minutes were planned by Thibodeau and the coaching staff. They know what they have with Butler, obviously.
The backup point guard situation
Thibodeau has said that he’ll need both Tyus Jones and Aaron Brooks. And he’s right. With 82 games, he absolutely will need to count on both of them. We also saw last year with Jones and Kris Dunn that he’s not afraid to play more than one point guard.
But for those keeping track at home, Brooks played 15 minutes and 57 seconds and finished with four points and three assists while shooting 1-for-6 from the field.
Jones played eight minutes and 15 seconds, and finished with two points, two rebounds and one assist. He was 0-for-1 from the field and 2-for-2 from the free-throw line.
I told you this would be short. Just three quick tidbits in case you missed Saturday night’s game.