Minnesota Timberwolves: 5 keys to making playoffs without Jimmy Butler

(Photo by Josh Lefkowitz/Getty Images)
(Photo by Josh Lefkowitz/Getty Images) /
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minnesota timberwolves
(Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /

Beat the bad teams

Nearly half of this league is going to be in tank mode with eight teams currently sitting at a .350 winning percentage or lower.  However, nearly all players have pride and if you let bad teams hang around, they will play hard. The Wolves need to dispatch bad teams with good starts and energetic first quarters, which hasn’t been easy.

According to teamrankings.com, the Timberwolves rank 11th in the NBA with an average of 27.2 points in the first quarter. Not coincidentally, Houston and Golden State rank one and two in first quarter scoring at 31.1 and 29.6, respectively. If the Wolves can create leads early, they will be much more likely to beat the teams with nothing to play for.