Archive for the ‘ Minnesota T-Wolves Blog ’ Category

Timberwolves waive Rasual Butler and Toure` Murry

The Minnesota Timberwolves have waived forward Rasual Butler and guard Toure’ Murry.

Butler averaged 0.8 points and 0.8 rebounds in five preseason games. He has appeared in 809 games over his 13-year NBA career, averaging 7.5 points and 2.4 rebounds. In 2015-16, he played in 46 games for the San Antonio Spurs, averaging 2.7 points and 1.2 rebounds in 9.4 minutes per game. Butler, the 53rd overall selection in the 2002 NBA Draft by Miami, has played with the Heat, New Orleans Pelicans, Los Angeles Clippers, Chicago Bulls, Toronto Raptors, Indiana Pacers, Washington Wizards and Spurs. Butler played six games under current Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach Tom Thibodeau in Chicago during the 2010-11 NBA season.

Murry averaged 2.7 points, 2.0 rebounds and 1.3 assists in three preseason games. He has played in 56 games with three teams between two NBA seasons, including appearing in 51 contests with the Knicks in 2013-14 where he averaged 2.7 points. Originally undrafted in the 2012 NBA Draft out of Wichita State, the 6-5 guard spent 2015-16 in the NBA D-League, starting the season with the Texas Legends before being acquired in a trade by the Sioux Falls Skyforce late in the season. Murry played in 45 games between the two stops, averaging 11.5 points, 4.7 assists and 4.1 rebounds in 31.3 minutes per game.

With the moves, the Wolves training camp roster stands at 15 players.

The Wolves open up their 28th season of basketball on Wednesday, October 26 at the Memphis Grizzlies at 7:00 pm CT. Opening night will be broadcast on Fox Sports North and the radio home of the Wolves, 830 WCCO. The team’s home opener is Tuesday, November 1 vs. the Memphis Grizzlies.

Timberwolves loaded with young talent

Each year, many teams get praised for having potential simply because they have a young roster. The problem there is, just because players are young doesn’t mean they’re going to improve enough to collectively turn a lottery team into a winner. A force. A contender. Sure, second and third-year players tend to perform at a higher level the following season. But usually not enough to propel a team into playoff contender discussions. But the Timberwolves have a lot of great pieces, a great new coach, and as much potential as any team in the NBA to go from mostly losing (29 wins, 53 losses last season, 16 wins and 66 losses in 2014-15) to respectable status. Here’s the Minneapolis Star Tribune reporting:

Timberwolves loaded with young talent

Kris Dunn is the exciting new Wolves rookie. Karl-Anthony Towns, at least according to NBA GMs, is the team’s franchise player — the one they would pick from the entire league right now if they were going to take one player to start a team. Zach LaVine is the super-athletic dunk champion. Ricky Rubio is the floor general.

But maybe, just maybe, Andrew Wiggins is the key to just how far the Wolves will go this year and beyond. He was the NBA’s top rookie two years ago and took a small step — but not a leap — forward last year. There doesn’t seem to be a clear consensus as to where his ceiling is — a nice wing but a volume scorer? An All-Star once or twice? A superstar? — but this is year three and those answers should start to come into focus.

Wiggins’ presence at the team’s media day a few weeks back suggested he’s emerging as a team leader along with Towns. But more important will be his play on the court — and while every NBA player works in the offseason in some way to stay sharp, a video that went live Tuesday of Wiggins’ summer work indicates a level of focus and intensity aimed at achieving greatness.

The Timberwolves have a young, talented roster that will be worth watching this season. They also have some space at the end of their bench for another player with a guaranteed contract that will keep him on the roster this season. Here’s the Minneapolis Star Tribune reporting:

Timberwolves have room for another guaranteed contract

Thibodeau was asked about the final roster spot. The team currently has 14 guaranteed contracts, and that includes Nikola Pekovic, who won’t play this season. That means one more spot will need to be filled. The team currently has Toure’ Murry, Rasual Butler and John Lucas III on non-guaranteed deals vying for that spot. But Thibodeau could also bring someone else in from the outside. “For us, the (preseason) games will be very helpful,” Thibodeau said. “It will reveal the things that we need to do better. It will reveal the things we’re doing well and, also, it will give us a better idea of who may help us the most with practice in the event you have an injury.’’

In other words, it’s likely too early to speculate. A potential injury could mean the need for a shooter, or another big man.

Timberwolves hire Ed Pinckney as assistant coach

The Timberwolves yesterday (Sunday) announced that Ed Pinckney has joined President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach Tom Thibodeau’s staff as Assistant Coach.

Pinckney joins Andy Greer, Ryan Saunders and Rick Brunson as Assistant Coaches on Thibodeau’s staff.

Pinckney rejoins the Timberwolves after serving as an Assistant Coach in Minnesota from 2007-09. He spent last season as an Assistant Coach with Denver, and spent the previous five seasons with Thibodeau in Chicago. The 10th overall pick in the 1985 NBA Draft by Phoenix, Pinckney spent 12 seasons in the NBA, playing for Phoenix, Sacramento, Boston, Milwaukee, Toronto, Philadelphia and Miami.

Timberwolves add Rasual Butler, John Lucas III and Toure` Murry to training camp

The Timberwolves finalized the team’s 2016-17 Training Camp roster today by signing forward Rasual Butler and guards John Lucas III and Toure’ Murry.

Butler, 37, has appeared in 809 games over his 13-year NBA career, averaging 7.5 points and 2.4 rebounds. In 2015-16, he played in 46 games for the San Antonio Spurs, averaging 2.7 points and 1.2 rebounds in 9.4 minutes per game. Butler, the 53rd overall selection in the 2002 NBA Draft by Miami, has played with the Heat, New Orleans Pelicans, Los Angeles Clippers, Chicago Bulls, Toronto Raptors, Indiana Pacers, Washington Wizards and Spurs. Butler played six games under current Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach Tom Thibodeau in Chicago during the 2010-11 NBA season.

In his eight-year NBA career, Lucas III, 33, has averaged 4.8 points, 1.5 assists and 12.3 minutes in 237 games. The 5-11 guard most recently played in the NBA with the Detroit Pistons in 2014-15, averaging 4.7 points and 2.9 assists in 21 games. Lucas has enjoyed NBA stints with the Houston Rockets, Oklahoma City Thunder, Chicago Bulls, Toronto Raptors, Utah Jazz and Pistons. Lucas III played under Thibodeau from 2010-12 in Chicago. He is the son of former NBA player John Lucas Jr., who played 14 years in the NBA from 1976-90.

Murry, 26, has played in 56 games with three teams between two NBA seasons, including appearing in 51 contests with the Knicks in 2013-14 where he averaged 2.7 points. Originally undrafted in the 2012 NBA Draft out of Wichita State, the 6-5 guard spent 2015-16 in the NBA D-League, starting the season with the Texas Legends before being acquired in a trade by the Sioux Falls Skyforce late in the season. Murry played in 45 games between the two stops, averaging 11.5 points, 4.7 assists and 4.1 rebounds in 31.3 minutes per game. Murry played for the Timberwolves entry in the 2016 Summer League, averaging 6.4 points, 3.0 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.2 steals in eight games.

Butler will wear No. 12, Lucas III will wear No. 11 and Murry will don No. 23.

Timberwolves basketball staff hirings

Timberwolves basketball staff hirings

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced additions to the team’s basketball staff for the 2016-17 NBA season, naming Noah Croom as Assistant General Manager, Brian Pauga as Director of Player Personnel and John Carideo, Jim Eyen, Drew Nicholas, Scott Roth and Jim Todd as Scouts. The team also named Matthew Duhamel as Director of Athletic Therapy, Pierre Nesbit as Assistant Athletic Trainer and Troy Sutton as Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach.

The team also announced the following staff have been appointed to various positions within the organization: Calvin Booth as Director of Pro Personnel, Matt Bollero as Pro Personnel Scout, David Crewe as Head Strength and Conditioning Coach/Assistant Athletic Trainer, Emmanuel Rohan as Director of Basketball Administration, Todd Checovich as Manager of Basketball Operations and Rachel Saunders as Manager of Team Services.

Croom comes to Minnesota after serving as Legal Counsel and Agent for Goodwin Sports Management (GSM) since 2002. Prior to joining GSM, Noah held positions at Latham & Watkins, a New York City based law firm, the National Basketball Association and the Vancouver Grizzlies. He served as Assistant General Manager and Legal Counsel for the Grizzlies, where he negotiated all player and coach contracts and represented the team in its dealings with the NBA league office.

Pauga spent the last nine seasons with the San Antonio Spurs, including taking over as Director of Scouting in 2012 and General Manager of the NBA D-League’s Austin Spurs in 2013. He started with the Spurs as a Basketball Operations Intern in July 2007 before earning a promotion to Basketball Operations Assistant in 2008. Before joining San Antonio, he worked as a student manager with the Michigan State men’s basketball team from 2003-07, including the Spartans’ 2005 Final Four squad.

Carideo has served as a Scout for NBA teams since 2001, including stops with the Denver Nuggets (2001-09), Charlotte Bobcats (2009-10) and New Orleans Pelicans (2010-16). Before joining the NBA, Carideo spent time as the Head Coach for the Trenton Shooting Stars of the IBL and was an Assistant Coach for various IBL and USBL teams, including winning the 1999 USBL Championship with the Atlantic City Seagulls.

Eyen has more than 26 years of NBA experience with over 30 years of combined coaching, consulting and scouting experience. He most recently served as an Assistant Coach for the Los Angeles Lakers from 2014-16, his second stint with the Lakers. He has also coached with the Los Angeles Clippers, Milwaukee Bucks, Portland Trail Blazers and Sacramento Kings.

Nicholas won the NCAA National Championship with Maryland in 2002 and reached the Final Four twice in his collegiate career. He played professionally for 10 years internationally, including winning the Euroleague Championship in both 2009 and 2011. His international career saw him play in a number of countries, including Greece, Italy, Russia, Spain and Turkey before his retirement in 2013. Since retiring as a player, Nicholas has served as an analyst for a variety of media outlets and coached youth basketball.

Roth returns to Minnesota as a Scout after playing for the Timberwolves in 1989-90, the team’s inaugural season. As a coach, he has served as an assistant on five NBA coaching staffs: Dallas, Detroit, Golden State, Memphis/Vancouver and Toronto as well as stints with four different national teams. Roth had a three-year NBA playing career with stops in Minnesota, San Antonio and Utah before playing internationally until 1994.

Todd has worked as an Assistant Coach for six different NBA teams over 15+ years, most recently as an Assistant to Mike Woodson with the New York Knicks from 2012-14. Todd’s career has also included stops with the Atlanta Hawks, Los Angeles Clippers, Milwaukee Bucks, Sacramento Kings and Toronto Raptors.

Duhamel joins Minnesota as Director of Athletic Therapy after spending six years with the Minnesota Vikings as an Assistant Athletic Trainer/Physical Therapist. Prior to his time with the Vikings, he worked as an Intern with the New England Patriots’ medical staff. Duhamel earned his undergraduate degree in Athletic Training from Northeastern University where he worked with the football and men’s basketball teams, before earning his Doctorate of Physical Therapy from Boston University.

Nesbit begins his first season with the Timberwolves as Assistant Athletic Trainer. Prior to coming to Minnesota, he most recently worked as a Seasonal Assistant Athletic Trainer for the New England Patriots during the team’s run to the 2016 AFC Championship Game. Nesbit received his Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training from Purdue University in 2013 before graduating from Auburn University with a Masters of Education in Exercise Science with an emphasis in Biomechanics in 2015.

Sutton enters his first year with Minnesota as Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach after most recently serving as the Assistant Director of Sports Performance at Northwestern University over the last four years. Sutton’s professional experience also includes time at Ohio State University, Arizona State University and Ohio University. Sutton received his Bachelor of Science in Sport and Leisure Studies from Ohio State University in 2004 before earning his Master of Science in Health and Human Sciences from Ohio University in 2005.

Timberwolves hire Andy Greer and Rick Brunson as assistant coaches

The Timberwolves on Sunday announced additions to the team’s coaching staff for the 2016-17 NBA season, naming Andy Greer and Rick Brunson as Assistant Coaches, Peter Patton as Shooting Coach, Daisuke Yoshimoto as Special Assistant to the President of Basketball Operations and promoting Vince Legarza to Player Development Coach. Ryan Saunders will also continue in his capacity as Assistant Coach.

Greer joins the Timberwolves after spending last season as an Assistant with the Toronto Raptors under Dwane Casey. Before joining the Raptors, Greer spent five seasons on Head Coach Tom Thibodeau’s staff in Chicago. Greer’s NBA resume also includes Assistant positions with the Memphis Grizzlies (2007-09), Houston Rockets (2003-07) and New York Knicks (2001-03), and Scout for the Portland Trail Blazers (2009-10).

Brunson is entering his third season coaching under Coach Thibodeau, previously serving as an Assistant Coach in Chicago from 2010-12. He got his start in the NBA coaching ranks as an Assistant with Denver in 2007 before stops in Chicago and Charlotte (2012-13). A nine-year NBA veteran, he played with seven different teams from 1997-2006, including playing in New York (1998-2000) and Houston (2005-06) when Thibodeau served as an Assistant Coach.

Legarza is entering his second season with the Timberwolves, originally joining the team prior to last season as Player Development Assistant/Player Development Video Coordinator. A San Francisco native, he spent two seasons in the Atlanta Hawks’ Basketball Operations/Player Development departments before coming to Minnesota. Prior to joining the NBA ranks, Legarza spent five years playing at Miami University, including serving as Captain of the squad for three seasons.

Patton has been teaching basketball for over 20 years, including learning the craft of shooting under San Antonio Spurs Assistant Coach Chip Engelland. A four-year graduate at DePaul, Patton never missed a game in college and set the DePaul single-season three-point percentage record as a junior (54.1%), a mark that still stands.

Yoshimoto joins the Timberwolves after spending last season in Denver as Video Coordinator. Before joining the Nuggets, he spent four seasons in Chicago as Video Coordinator under Thibodeau. Prior to starting his career with the New Jersey Nets, Yoshimoto served as Video Coordinator for the Ukraine National Team under the direction of Head Coach Mike Fratello.

Here’s the Minneapolis Star Tribune reporting on Team Spain, who aren’t getting much production from point guard Ricky Rubio:

Ricky Rubio does little in Spain loss to Brazil

Ricky Rubio walked off at halftime looking dejected, staring at the floor, the last of Spain’s players to get to the locker room. By the end of the game, he was standing on the sideline, waving a towel, urging on his teammates.

Rubio contributed another unproductive game to Spain’s waning Olympic hopes on Tuesday, producing three points before fouling out of Spain’s 66-65 loss to Brazil at the Rio Games. In 16 minutes, Rubio produced four rebounds, two turnovers, three points, zero steals or blocks and zero assists. He finished minus-6 for a team that lost in the last seconds to a less-heralded team.

Timberwolves sign Jordan Hill

Timberwolves sign Jordan Hill

The Timberwolves have signed forward/center Jordan Hill.

Hill, 28, spent this past season in Indiana with the Pacers averaging 8.8 points, on 50.6 percent shooting, and 6.2 rebounds in a career-best 73 games played. Hill averaged 10.7 points and 7.1 rebounds in 11 starts and scored in double figures 20 times for the Pacers in 2015-16.

The 6-10 forward/center has played parts of seven seasons with Indiana, Los Angeles Lakers, Houston and New York. In 420 games, including 120 starts, Hill owns career averages of 8.0 points, on 49.7 percent shooting, and 5.9 rebounds in 19.0 minutes per contest. Hill’s best season came two years ago with the Lakers when he made a career-best 57 starts, totaling career-high averages of 12.0 points and 7.9 rebounds in 26.8 minutes per contest. Hill was originally selected 8th overall in the 2009 NBA Draft by the Knicks.

Timberwolves sign Cole Aldrich

Timberwolves sign Cole Aldrich

The Minnesota Timberwolves have signed center Cole Aldrich, a Bloomington, Minnesota native.

Aldrich’s deal is reportedly a $22 million dollar contract, over three years.

Aldrich, 27, averaged 5.5 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.1 blocks in 13.3 minutes per game last season with the Los Angeles Clippers. Aldrich started five games for the Clippers in 2015-16, averaging 15.8 points, 11.0 rebounds and 2.4 steals in 29.6 minutes per contest. Aldrich posted career highs in field goal percentage (59.6%), blocks per game (1.13) and steals per game (0.78) and was the only player in the NBA last season to record a game of at least 21 points, 18 rebounds and 5 steals.

The 6-11 center owns career averages of 3.6 points, 3.7 rebounds and 0.8 blocks in parts of six NBA seasons with Los Angeles, New York, Sacramento, Houston and Oklahoma City. Aldrich was originally the 11th overall selection in the 2010 NBA Draft by New Orleans before his draft rights were traded to Oklahoma City on July 8, 2010.

Aldrich starred for Bloomington Jefferson High School, earning 2007 Minnesota State High School Player of the Year honors from Gatorade, the Minneapolis Star Tribune and St. Paul Pioneer Press as he led the Jaguars to Lake Conference and Section 2AAAA titles. Aldrich was also named a McDonald’s All-American in 2006.

Aldrich went on to play for the University of Kansas where he averaged 9.4 points, 7.7 rebounds and 2.3 blocks in three years as a Jayhawk. Aldrich was a consensus 2nd Team All-America selection and a Wooden Award Finalist his junior season before declaring for the NBA draft.

Timberwolves sign Brandon Rush

Timberwolves sign Brandon Rush

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced the team has signed guard/forward Brandon Rush.

Rush, 31, shot 41.4 percent (65-for-157) from three-point range while averaging 4.2 points, 2.5 rebounds and 14.7 minutes in 72 games last season for the Golden State Warriors. Rush started 25 games for the Warriors last year, averaging 7.0 points and 3.3 rebounds in 21.0 minutes per game while shooting 50 percent from the field, including 49.4 percent from three-point range.

The 6-6 guard/forward has career averages of 7.0 points and 2.6 rebounds in eight NBA seasons with Golden State, Utah and Indiana. Rush is a career 40.3 percent (478-for-1186) shooter from beyond the arc, making him one of just 11 active players to own a career 40 percent mark from three-point range in at least 1,000 career attempts.

Rush was drafted by the Portland Trail Blazers with the 13th pick in the first round of the 2008 NBA Draft and traded the following month to the Indiana Pacers. He played three seasons with Indiana. In 2009-10, Rush played in all 82 games (64 starts) and averaged 9.4 points and a career-high 4.2 rebounds. On Dec. 19, 2011, he was traded to Golden State where he averaged a career-best 9.8 points per game while appearing in 65 games in that shortened season. Rush was traded to Utah in the summer of 2013 and played the 2013-14 season with the Jazz before signing as a free agent with Golden State in the summer of 2014.

Timberwolves sign rookie Kris Dunn

Kris Dunn is worth watching

Timberwolves sign rookie Kris Dunn

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced the team has signed guard Kris Dunn, the fifth overall selection in the 2016 NBA Draft.

All players selected in the first round of the Draft are guaranteed to receive a contract, assuming they want to begin their NBA career right away. This signing was expected.

Dunn, a 6-4 guard out of Providence, averaged 12.8 points, 5.1 rebounds, 5.8 assists and 2.2 steals in 95 games over three-plus seasons. He is the only Providence player to tally career totals of 1,000 points, 400 rebounds, 500 assists and 200 steals with the Friars. As a junior this past season, Dunn averaged 16.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, 6.2 assists and 2.5 steals, and was named Big East Player of the Year, Big East Defensive Player of the Year and a Second Team All-American. He led the Big East in steals, ranking fifth in the nation, and finished second in the Big East in assists and fourth in scoring. Dunn was also named 2014-15 Big East Player of the Year and Big East Defensive Player of the Year as a redshirt sophomore after averaging 15.6 points, 5.5 rebounds, 7.5 assists and 2.7 steals. He joined Georgetown’s Patrick Ewing as the only players to win Big East Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year twice.

Brandon Rush to join Timberwolves

Brandon Rush to join Timberwolves

Looks like Brandon Rush and Cole Aldrich will have a bit of a reunion this fall.

Wednesday the Timberwolves agreed with Rush — the three-point specialist who spent four of the last five seasons with Golden State — on a one-year, $3.5 million contract. In the process the Wolves nabbed their second free agent of the NBA’s bargaining period — and both Rush and Aldrich were on Kansas’ 2008 NCAA championship team.

Contracts cannot be signed or announced until Thursday.

– Minneapolis Star Tribune

With most free agents having already made agreements, now we’re mostly left with players who will have a backup role. Here’s the Minneapolis Star Tribune with a Timberwolves update:

Timberwolves, Cole Aldrich reach agreement

Going into the third day of free agency, the Wolves have made their first move by reaching agreement on a three-year, $22 million contract with Los Angeles Clippers center Cole Aldrich.

The former Bloomington Jefferson star and Kansas University center is coming home.

Reached by colleague Kent Youngblood on Sunday evening while on an Italian vacation, Aldrich, 27, said “being part of the organization I grew up watching is really very special. You always kind of think it’s a possibility. You never really know. I’m just really exicted.”

Timberwolves waive Greg Smith

Timberwolves waive Greg Smith

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced the team has waived forward/center Greg Smith.

Smith was originally signed to 10-day contracts on March 2 and March 12 before being signed through the end of the season on March 22. He averaged 2.4 points and 2.3 rebounds over 18 games last season with the Timberwolves. In his career, Smith has appeared in 149 games with three teams (Houston, Dallas, Minnesota) and holds career averages of 4.0 points and 3.3 rebounds per game.

Timberwolves CEO Rob Moor resigns

Timberwolves CEO Rob Moor resigns

The Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx announced today that Rob Moor, who served as CEO for both franchises, is resigning from his position with the teams. Moor is transitioning to a role that will assist in the oversight of the holdings and business interests of Glen Taylor.

“I have been a part of the Timberwolves and Lynx organizations for over 20 years. I am extremely proud of the direction of the Timberwolves, and of the accomplishments of the three-time WNBA Champion Lynx,” said Moor. “It has been an honor to work with such a great group of fellow professionals.

“Glen has planned that the family assets will eventually move to a foundation,” Moor continued. “I am honored that Glen would select me to join a team that will be responsible for safeguarding those assets and seeing them continue to develop in the future.”

“As I continue preparations for succession planning, I recognize that our family’s assets have reached the point where a new approach needed to take place,” said Timberwolves and Lynx majority owner Glen Taylor. “The management and oversight over this diverse portfolio of companies requires more involvement by the family than they have in the past. Thus, I have asked Rob to join me in support of the oversight over these companies. Rob has worked with me since the beginning of my ownership of the Timberwolves and Lynx. Together, we have built a franchise that has a very promising future. His contributions, friendship and leadership are things that I will value in his new role and responsibilities.”

Moor’s replacement as Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx CEO will be determined in the near future.

Timberwolves announce mass firings

Timberwolves announce mass firings

Minnesota Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach Tom Thibodeau and General Manager Scott Layden this afternoon announced changes in the team’s front office and coaching structure:

“Effective immediately, the following individuals will be relieved of their respective duties: previous General Manager Milt Newton, Vice President of Basketball Operations Rob Babcock, Vice President of Sports Performance Arnie Kander, Assistant Coach Sid Lowe, Director of Sports Performance Koichi Sato, Manager of Team Travel/Facilities Coordinator Bill Hohenecker, Head of Video Department and Manager of Basketball Technology Brice Long and Scouts Milton Barnes and Jason Hervey.”

“We would like to thank all of these individuals for their contributions to our organization and wish them well in their future endeavors.”

Karl-Anthony Towns wins 2015-16 NBA Rookie of Year award

Minnesota Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns, who set franchise rookie records in scoring, rebounding, blocked shots and field goal percentage, has unanimously won the 2015-16 NBA Rookie of the Year Award, the NBA announced today. The 7-foot center becomes the fifth unanimous winner since 1984 and joins teammate Andrew Wiggins, the 2014-15 honoree, to make the Timberwolves the first team with back-to-back winners in 42 years.

Towns received all 130 first-place votes (650 points) from a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters in the United States and Canada, joining Damian Lillard (2012-13 season), Blake Griffin (2010-11), David Robinson (1989-90) and Ralph Sampson (1983-84) as unanimous winners in the last 32 years.

New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis finished second with 363 points, and Denver Nuggets forward Nikola Jokic was third with 59 points. Players were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote.

The No. 1 overall pick in NBA Draft 2015, Towns led all rookies in scoring (18.3 ppg) and rebounding (10.5 rpg, eighth in the NBA) and ranked second in blocks (1.68 bpg, 10th in the NBA) – making him the league’s only player to reach those averages in the three categories. He also ranked third in the NBA in double-doubles (51) and eighth in field goal percentage (54.2). Towns was one of six players in the league to start all 82 games.

The 20-year-old Towns swept all six NBA Western Conference Rookie of the Month awards on his way to becoming the seventh rookie in NBA history to average at least 18 points, 10 rebounds and 1.5 blocks and shoot 50 percent or better from the field. Since blocks became an official statistic in 1973-74, the other players to post those numbers are Sampson (1983-84), Hakeem Olajuwon (1984-85), Robinson (1989-90), Alonzo Mourning (1992-93), Shaquille O’Neal (1992-93) and Tim Duncan (1997-98).

Before last season, the Timberwolves had never had a Kia NBA Rookie of the Year winner since joining the NBA for the 1989-90 season. With Towns and Wiggins now honored in back-to-back years, the Timberwolves are the first team with consecutive winners since the Buffalo Braves in 1972-73 (Bob McAdoo) and 1973-74 (Ernie DiGregorio).

The Toronto Raptors’ Norman Powell and the Minnesota Timberwolves’ Karl-Anthony Towns today were named the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month, respectively, for games played in April.

Powell helped the Raptors to a 6-2 record behind averages of 15.3 points (tops in the Eastern Conference), 4.4 rebounds (seventh), 2.5 assists (tied-fifth) and 1.4 steals (third). He scored in double figures in six of eight games and shot 54.8 percent from the field. In Toronto’s regular-season finale, Powell scored a career-high 30 points on 12-of-18 shooting (including 5-of-6 from three-point range) and added nine rebounds and five assists during the Raptors’ 103-96 win over the Brooklyn Nets.

Towns becomes the first player to sweep a season of Kia NBA Rookie of the Month awards since the Portland Trail Blazers’ Damian Lillard in 2012-13. In April, Towns helped the Timberwolves to a 4-3 mark as he led all rookies in scoring (18.9 ppg), rebounding ( 11.7 rpg), blocks (1.7 bpg) and minutes (35.6 mpg). Towns capped his first NBA season with his 51st double-double (third most in the NBA) when he tallied 28 points and 14 rebounds during Minnesota’s 144-109 win over the New Orleans Pelicans on April 13.

Other nominees for the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month were Denver’s Emmanuel Mudiay, New York’s Jerian Grant, Phoenix’s Devin Booker and Utah’s Trey Lyles.

Paul Millsap, NBA Players of Week

Atlanta Hawks forward Paul Millsap and Minnesota Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns today were named NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week, respectively, for games played Monday, April 4 through Sunday, April 10.

Millsap helped the Hawks to a 3-0 week, which included wins over the Toronto Raptors and Boston Celtics. He averaged 19.0 points, led the league in both rebounds (15.7 rpg) and blocks (4.33 bpg), and posted point-rebound double-doubles in all three contests. On April 9, Millsap’s 31-point, 16-rebound, five-block performance lifted Atlanta to a 118-107 win over Boston and moved the Hawks one game ahead of the Celtics for the third seed in the Eastern Conference playoff race.

Karl-Anthony Towns wins nba player of week

Towns led the Timberwolves to a 3-0 week, which included wins over the Golden State Warriors and Portland Trail Blazers. He averaged 21.3 points (seventh in the Western Conference), 10.3 rebounds (tied-sixth) and 1.67 blocks (tied-sixth). On April 9, Towns made the game-winning shot with 1.8 seconds remaining during the Timberwolves’ 106-105 win over the Trail Blazers.

Other nominees for the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week were Atlanta’s Jeff Teague, Detroit’s Reggie Jackson, Golden State’s Stephen Curry and the Los Angeles Clippers’ Jamal Crawford.

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