Timberpups Tracker: Towns goes off in back-to-back games
The Minnesota Timberwolves have one of the most exciting collections of young players on an NBA roster with nearly half of their players 25 or younger. Every Thursday, FOX Sports North tracks the progress of those young Timberwolves.
This is the 17th edition of the 2016-17 Timberpups Tracker.
(A glossary of the advanced statistics used for season totals, which are from basketball-reference.com. can be found at the end of this article)
Out for the season: Zach LaVine
KRIS DUNN (age 22, first season)
Statistical season averages: 16.4 minutes, 3.6 points, 2.1 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 0.9 steals, 0.4 blocks, 36.8 FG%, 30.4 3PT%
Statistical averages, last week: 14.4 minutes, 2.5 points, 1.3 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 1.0 steals, 0.3 blocks, 23.5 FG%, 0.0 3PT%
Advanced stats, season: 7.5 PER, 42.9 TS%, 14.6 USG%, 89 ORtg, 108 DRtg, -0.2 VORP
Notable: Dunn had a solid night defensively Wednesday against the Boston Celtics. He collided with Lance Stephenson at one point, apparently causing Stephenson’s left ankle injury. The veteran was on the final day of his second 10-day contract of the season so… well, that’s probably that.
TYUS JONES (age 20, second season)
Statistical season averages: 12.5 minutes, 3.5 points, 1.0 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 0.7 steals, 0.1 blocks, 39.7 FG%, 37.1 3PT%
Statistical averages, last week: 10.2 minutes, 1.8 points, 0.8 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 0.8 steals, 0.3 blocks, 22.2 FG%, 0.0 3PT%
Advanced stats, season: 13.4 PER, 52.2 TS%, 13.8 USG%, 115 ORtg, 111 DRtg, 0.0 VORP
Notable: His numbers are way down this week, as Jones continues to play negligible minutes, but with Ricky Rubio playing some of the best basketball of his career that’s probably to be expected. Jones hit two shots last week on nine attempts from the floor.
SHABAZZ MUHAMMAD (age 24, fourth season)
Statistical season averages: 19.7 minutes, 9.5 points, 2.9 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 0.3 steals, 0.1 blocks, 47.2 FG%, 36.4 3PT%
Statistical averages, last week: 22.8 minutes, 9.5 points, 3.8 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 0.0 steals, 0.3 blocks, 41.7 FG%, 0.0 3PT%
Advanced stats, season: 14.2 PER, 56.4 TS%, 20.6 USG%, 114 ORtg, 115 DRtg, -0.6 VORP
Notable: ‘Baaz started his week with a solid, 11-point outing against the Golden State Warriors, and ended it with a 21 points in a loss to the Celtics. He remains the Wolves’ top option off the bench.
KARL-ANTHONY TOWNS (age 21, second season)
Statistical season averages: 36.8 minutes, 24.3 points, 12.3 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 0.6 steals, 1.4 blocks, 53.4 FG%, 35.0 3PT%
Statistical averages, last week: 40.3 minutes, 26.5 points, 14.0 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 0.5 steals, 0.5 blocks, 62.2 FG%, 14.3 3PT%
Advanced stats, season: 25.3 PER, 60.7 TS%, 27.4 USG%, 119 ORtg, 108 DRtg, 4.5 VORP
Notable: Towns went off in back-to-back games against Milwaukee and Washington, rattling off 35 points against the Bucks and dropping 39 on the Wizards. He and Wiggins have benefitted from Rubio’s surge. Rubio has a franchise-record 19 assists against the Wizards, and Towns went off accordingly.
ANDREW WIGGINS (age 22, third season)
Statistical season averages: 37.2 minutes, 22.9 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.0 steals, 0.4 blocks, 45.2 FG%, 34.9 3PT%
Statistical averages, last week: 38.2 minutes, 17.8 points, 4.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 0.8 steals, 0.3 blocks, 36.1 FG%, 44.4 3PT%
Advanced stats, season: 16.2 PER, 53.3 TS%, 28.3 USG%, 106 ORtg, 113 DRtg, -0.1 VORP
Notable: Wiggins scored 24 against the Warriors and 21 against the Celtics, but poor percentages from the floor hurt in the Bucks game and the Wizards game hurt him. His rebounding numbers are up slightly over the last few weeks.
GLOSSARY OF TERMS
PER — Player Efficiency Rating: A measure of per-minute production standardized such that the league average is 15.
TS% — True Shooting Percentage: A measure of shooting efficiency that takes into account 2-point field goals, 3-point field goals, and free throws.
USG% — Usage Percentage: An estimate of the percentage of team plays used by a player while he was on the floor.
ORtg — Offensive Rating: An estimate of points produced per 100 possessions.
DRtg — Defensive Rating: An estimate of points allowed per 100 possessions.
VORP — Value over Replacement Player: A box score estimate of the points per 100 TEAM possessions that a player contributed above a replacement-level (-2.0) player, translated to an average team and prorated to an 82-game season.