Chris Finch Unimpressed by Timberwolves ‘Immature’ Win vs Mavs

NBA: Dallas Mavericks at Minnesota Timberwolves
Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Timberwolves suffered a rare loss earlier this week against the red hot Oklahoma City Thunder, putting their 2023 undefeated record after a loss, in jeopardy on Thursday vs the Dallas Mavericks.

But just like they have all season, the Wolves refused to lose two in a row, defeating a Luka Doncic-less Mavs squad 118-110, in a game that was probably closer than it should have been.

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Early on, this one felt like it was going to be a snooze-fest, after Minnesota jumped out to an early 18-point lead that hovered around 15 points for most of the first half. But A LOT of turnovers late in the 2nd quarter aided a Mavericks run that slashed the Timberwolves lead to just 5 points, entering halftime.

The contest was pretty close from that point forward. Minnesota outscored Dallas by two points in the 3rd and one point in the 4th, to secure an 8-point victory. For the most part, though, they led the game wire-to-wire.

Anthony Edwards shines again

Anthony Edwards finally cooled off late in the 4th quarter but he was god-like for most of the night, finishing with 44 points, 4 assists and 3 rebounds. A lot of those points came off of free throws, of which Ant shot 18, a career high. He made 14 of those 18.

But it wasn’t just Edwards. Per usual, the Wolves dub on Thursday night was a group effort. Rudy Gobert put up 20 points and 11 rebounds. Both Karl-Anthony Towns (10 points, 8 assists) and Kyle Anderson (8 points, 10 rebounds) nearly secured a double-doubles too.

For the most part, this Minnesota Timberwolves team continually shows their willingness to choose team over individual goals. Towns will put up huge points, when needed, but he’s fine playing Robin too, like he did Thursday night.

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The main objective is to win as many regular season games as possible, get as high a seed in the Western Conference playoff bracket as possible… and then get to work on an NBA Finals run.

Chris Finch unimpressed by Wolves’ performance after win

But don’t tell any of that to head coach, Chris Finch, whose postgame press conference felt more like that of a head coach whose team just lost by 20 points. Finchy was not happy with the 2nd quarter lead they gave up and the 15 first half turnovers.

He lamented the team’s selfish offense, saying “I think everyone’s a little to worried at times about getting their own offense going”, which he said led to all those turnovers: “At that point, we deserve to turn the ball over because they’re just not smart plays”.

But that wasn’t all the Wolves’ head coach had to say. At different points in the rant below, he called the players immature, saying “there are a lot of ways to be immature” and accused everyone, at one point or another, of “having a pity party for ourselves”.

“And we’re just, we’re going places where there’s nowhere to go. And it’s on us. It’s just bad decisions. And at that point in time, we deserved to turn the ball over because they’re just not smart plays, you know?”

“I think everyone’s a little, at times, too worried about getting their own offense going, you know? I mean, [Anthony Edwards] had a hot start, so we’ve got to ride that hot start. But then when that hot start is over, then you gotta start making plays. Other people, if they haven’t touched the ball for a little while, they can’t just decide that they’re going to put their head down and go to the hoop or they’re just going to jack it because they haven’t shot it for a little while.”

“I thought at the end of the second quarter, in particular, we all were having a pity party for ourselves offensively. And, you know, there’s a lot of ways to be immature. And generally, this team’s been very mature. But, you know, we got to grow up offensively. It’s time.”

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Chris Finch is perfect coach for Minnesota Timberwolves

How can you not love Chris Finch. He knows exactly what the Minnesota Timberwolves are capable of and, win or lose, he is going to hold them to that standard, which clearly they did not meet on Thursday night.

If the Wolves do make a deep Western Conference playoff run, Chris Finch will not get the credit he deserves. But he is just as big a reason as anything not named Anthony Edwards for why the Wolves keep on winning.

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