Maybe it's a playoff learning curve that the young Timberwolves are going through, but it's concerning that nearly everyone in the team's locker room following Monday's blowout loss to the Rockets admitted that they didn't play with enough energy.
How a team that hasn't been in the playoffs in 14 years fails to play with consistent energy – at home – against the most dangerous offensive team in the NBA is beyond bewildering.
But it happened in Game 4 and Houston used a mind-blowing 50-point third quarter to squash the Wolves like a bug, 119-100, taking a 3-1 lead with the best-of-seven series going back to Houston on Wednesday.
Here are players' answers as to why Houston was able to stomp them the way they did.
Karl-Anthony Towns: "We have to keep that edge that we had in the first half, for all 48 minutes, and we didn't do that tonight," he said. "They brought the energy tonight, we didn't bring as much energy as we needed to to come out with a win tonight."
Jimmy Butler: "We came out lackadaisical on both ends of the floor. "We didn't take anything away from them. They got whatever shot that they wanted."
Jeff Teague: "Yeah, I don't think we were playing with the same pace, the same energy,"
Andrew Wiggins: "We didn't respond. I feel like we just came out in the third quarter kind of slow."
The frightening thing about the lack of a will to win or killer instinct is that Minnesota doesn't know why it keeps happening.
"I don't know," Wiggins said when asked how it happened
Is it just really difficult to play with the same kind of pace and energy Houston does?
"No, it's the playoffs," said Teague.
Without an answer Minnesota is doomed in this series, possibly as soon as Wednesday night in Game 5.