Expectations of this Minnesota team varied around the NBA community. Most predicted that their young stars would continue to improve offensively, but that their ceiling was that of a play-in or fringe playoff team.
The Timberwolves, however, have come out of the gates winning games because of their defense. They rank 5th in the association in defensive rating through four games.
Skeptics will point to how early it is in the season, but this defense is full of young, active players with length. If we see this level of effort and connectivity all season, they’re going to stay solid.
Even with a small sample size of games against underwhelming opponents, the improvement is too dramatic to ignore. For a team that posted a defensive rating of 114.5 last year, a 5th place rating of 99.0 must have coach Chris Finch grinning from ear to ear.
How good is this defense? Just ask Anthony Edwards.