Preview: Timberwolves versus Fever, Hoosiers, Pacers, or Someone From Indiana.

Timberwolves fans will welcome a familiar face back to Target Center as Greg Stiemsma leers in the background.

Where: Target Center (Go to the game!)

When: 7pm

See It: At Target Center. Fine, or FSN.

Hear It: WCCO-AM 830

In this space, I normally try to think of some interesting or clever tie-in to the game that makes you want to keep reading. Or maybe it’s trickery. But the Timberwolves play the Pacers at home tonight and I am hard pressed to think of any cool Indiana related tie-in. I’m trying—I really am! I guess I’ll just have to find something, since that is my job of sorts.

Let’s see…I could talk about how tonight is the night that the Timberwolves exact revenge for their WNBA counterparts defeat to the Indiana Fever in the Finals.

We’ll put that down as a “maybe”.

Perhaps I could discuss my theory on how Lou Amundson is a double agent sent by the Pacers to steal Ricky Rubio’s point guard secrets for DJ Augustin.

Let’s come back to that one.

I know! I could talk about how their number one ranking in the nation marks their official return from the Kelvin Sampson scandal, and how Cody Zeller—crap, wrong Indiana team.

Ugh. Why is this so hard?!

Ok, ok…the Pacers…the Pacers…well, we know they’re 2-3 having lost two in a row to the Spurs (Blown out) and the Hawks (Low-scoring 89-86 loss. Ew.), and also lost Danny Granger for an extended period of time. But hey, how about them Hoosiers!

I kid, I kid. The Pacers are still a top seven defensive team and still have a very good tandem of David West and Roy Hibbert in the frontcourt, in addition to Paul George, who will be counted on to make up for the loss of Granger.

The Hibbert-Pekovic matchup will be one to watch. While Hibbert can be taken advantage of by centers with nimble footwork and a strong set of post moves, he did very well against Pek last season. In two games, Hibbert out-shot and out-rebounded Pek each time. In fact, Hibbert shot .667% and .714% against Pek’s .364% and .455%. Two games is a tiny sample, and it’s worth noting that they’ve only played each other four total times, but so far, Hibbert has been a handful for Pek.

Is Greg Stiemsma the answer for Hibbert? Er, well, maybe…probably not.

And as I noted before, the Wolves are also going to have to account for Paul George and Gerald Green on the perimeter, making for what may be a very good test for a Timberwolves that is fresh off of a trouncing of the Magic at home.

Starting Fives:

George Hill – PG – Luke Ridnour

Paul George – SG – Brandon Roy

Sam Young – SF – Derrick Williams

David West – PF – Andrei Kirilenko

Roy Hibbert – C – Nikola Pekovic

Oh, and JJ Barea is questionable because of his ankle.


About Derek James

In addition to writing for Howlin' T-Wolf, Derek James writes about basketball Hardwood Paroxysm in the ESPN TrueHoop Network and covers the Charlotte Bobcats for SB Nation’s Rufus on Fire. Andray Blatche and Isaiah Rider follow him on Twitter.

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