We have loads of trade deadline coverage already up and more on the way, but the Suns have a game tonight. It really feels like we are heading into a new season, but we're not. The Suns play the Timberwolves tonight at 6pm AZ time and the Suns are not alone in a new look.
The Wolves are currently 11-42 and looking more at the possibility of Jahlil Okafor, D'Angelo Russell, or Karl-Anthony Towns in the draft than the season itself. Andrew Wiggins is having a great rookie year and they've got some great stretches of play from Shabazz Muhammad and Gorgui Dieng.
The biggest news for the Wolves is that they are finally healthy. For the exception of Muhammad who is questionable tonight, they are all back. Ricky Rubio, Nikola Pekovic, and Kevin Martin all missed significant time this season, but they are all back now. This makes the Wolves much better than they appear and I would have said a a couple weeks ago when the Suns were in a playoff race that this was a trap game.
Of course the development out of Minnesota this week is the return of Kevin Garnett. Garnett was traded for Thaddeus Young, who the Wolves just traded for in the offseason for a first-round pick, which is usually a move you make when you want to win. However, they seem more interested in the narrative of the whole thing and the ownership stakes as Garnett has looked just about done in Brooklyn this year. He will not play tonight anyway.
Brandon Knight and Marcus Thornton will not be available tonight and there's still not a concrete word on whether or not Danny Granger is sticking around. With that in mind the Suns will only be playing 10 guys tonight and it's a big night for the kids.
Eric Bledsoe will really have his work cut out for him being the only point guard on the roster. This means we will probably see not only a lot of Archie Goodwin, but even some time at point. Reggie Bullock will also see some minutes backing up Gerald Green and T.J. Warren will probably get some looks playing alongside Marcus Morris.
The big thing to watch for tonight and perhaps the rest of the season is those three young guys and seeing how they respond to the most playing time they've ever had in their career. They are battling for a possible spot in the rotation this season and in the future.
It's really tough to expect the Suns to do much in this one. The Timberwolves are healthy, fully stocked, and at home. I expect Bledsoe to be ready to prove why he's the only point guard standing and one of those kids will have a big night, but there's too much adjusting to do for the Suns.
Prediction: Wolves 114, Suns 109