The Wolves are playing about as well as the worst teams in franchise history

It looks like the Wolves will have a decent shot at getting the No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft.
Author:
Publish date:
49101088526_c080f9dacf_o

The Wolves were 10-8 as they sat down at the dinner table on Thanksgiving Day. Some called it a "hot" start, but the reality is that Minnesota had as many losses by Turkey Day as the Milwaukee Bucks have now

It goes to show that 31 years of almost constant losing shapes the minds of fans to the point that playing just above .500 is pretty darn good. When it comes to winning, the bar is not set high for the Wolves. But with losing, that bar is sky-high, making it damn near impossible to be as bad as the worst teams in franchise history. 

The 1992 and 2010 Wolves both went 15-67, tied for seventh-worst record in any 82-game season in NBA history. Throw in the 16-win 2016 Wolves and Minnesota owns three of the most miserable 82-game seasons ever. 

  1. 9-73 (76ers, 1973)
  2. 10-72 (76ers, 2016)
  3. 11-71 (Mavericks, 1993 and Nuggets, 1993)
  4. 12-70 (Clippers, 1987 and Nets, 2010)
  5. 13-69 (Mavericks, 1994 and Hawks, 2005)
  6. 14-68 (Rockets, 1983 and Grizzlies, 1997)
  7. 15-67 (Wolves, 1992 and 2010 - and 13 other teams)
  8. 16-66 (Wolves, 2016 - and 3 other teams)

That brings us to the present day Wolves, whose 17-42 record is awful, but not nearly as ugly as what it would look like if not for that "hot" start in which they won 10 of their first 18 games. 

After Sunday's loss to the Luka Doncic-less Mavericks, the Wolves have lost 20 of their last 22 and are a putrid 7-34 since starting 10-8. That's .170 winning percentage over 41 games – half of a season. 

Extrapolate Minnesota's 7-34 record over their last 41 games for a full 82 games and the 2019-20 Wolves would be playing a 14-win pace. Perhaps worst of all is that the current iteration's roster has featured three max-contract players: Karl-Anthony Towns, Andrew Wiggins, who was traded for the third max player, D'Angelo Russell. 

Max-contract guys are supposed to win. That's why they're paid the big bucks. Minnesota is 10-25 in games with Towns, 12-30 with Wiggins and 1-6 with Russell. 

Towns, despite knee and wrist injuring marring his season, hasn't put the team on his back and carried them to victory even once. Wiggins couldn't do it alone either, and so far it's the same result with Russell. 

President of Basketball Operations Gersson Rosas is probably the last to blame since he's blown up the roster in hopes of creating a winning product down the road. But he's already cemented himself in franchise lore with a 24 hours to forget.

After an upset win over Jimmy Butler and the Miami Heat on Wednesday, Rosas tweeted "Tank that!"

Rosas' effort to quiet fans who suspect the Wolves of tanking for better odds in the NBA Draft Lottery immediately backfired as the very next day the NBA fined Minnesota $25,000 for resting D'Angelo Russell in a game against the Nuggets when Russell was healthy.

Breaking news: A known tanking tactic resting good players when they're healthy. 

While the future might be bright if Towns and Russell are healthy and on the floor together, this season is trending towards one of the worst in franchise history – and that's saying something.

Next Up

Gary Kubiak

Vikings offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak announces retirement

Kubiak wraps up a career that has spanned nearly four decades.

alphaMPD

Minneapolis police seeks public help finding missing woman

A 63-year-old woman has been missing since Tuesday

coronavirus testing

Don't want to talk to a contact tracer? MN debuts online option after positive test

The department says the survey will allow its staff to keep track of more cases at a faster pace

Family Dollar

Money Gal Coaching: 12 things you are wasting your money on

Kelly Blodgett started Money Gal Coaching after paying down nearly $50K in debt in 18 months.

police lights

Three teens charged in Minneapolis robberies

The incidents took place on Saturday in Minneapolis.

covid-19, coronavirus, ppe

Here is Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Thursday, January 21

It's the first time in exactly four months that Minnesota has had fewer than 100 COVID patients in intensive care.

icy roads, bad roads

Girl, 16, killed in crash with semi on icy Minnesota road

The crash happened in Dodge County around 8 a.m. Wednesday.

police lights

Road rage incident sees driver punch out man's window, punch him in face

The incident happened in Waite Park Wednesday morning.

Screen Shot 2019-10-11 at 7.01.24 AM

Minneapolis will recover $100K in costs connected to 2019 Trump rally

The Target Center operator said it'll pay the costs over three years.

Jacob Frey

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey confirms run for reelection

He has faced criticism over the city's response to George Floyd's death.

Related

Wolves' Towns, Wiggins 'trying to change the culture'

The former No. 1 picks say they're working daily to improve.

49101088526_c080f9dacf_o

Down 6 players, Wolves give NBA-leading Bucks a fight

It was a good battle, but the Bucks came out on top.

Gersson Rosas

Wolves show signs of becoming modern NBA team

Minnesota has all but stopped taking low-percentage 2-point shots.

What a scout says about players linked to Wolves in NBA Draft

The draft begins at 6 p.m. Thursday and the Wolves have the 11th overall pick.

D'Angelo Russell

NBA insiders: Wolves chances of getting D'Angelo Russell are real

Long time Wolves writer Zach Harper joined a Twin Cities radio station this week.

Screen Shot 2019-10-23 at 8.50.33 AM

5 things to watch for as the Wolves open the season in Brooklyn

Minnesota opens the season at Brooklyn Wednesday night.

Andrew Wiggins

Russell's 52 not enough as Wiggins nets 40 in clutch performance

D'Angelo Russell lit up Minnesota for a career-high 52 points.