Timberpups Tracker: Feb. 25 edition
The Minnesota Timberwolves have one of the most exciting collections of young players on an NBA roster. Every Thursday, FOX Sports North tracks the progress of those on the Timberwolves who are in their first or second season in the league.
After a brief hiatus due to the All-Star break, we're back with the 14th edition of the 2015-16 Timberpups Tracker.
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.
ANDREW WIGGINS (age 21, second season)
Statistical season averages (last week): 20.8 points (21.8), 3.6 rebounds (3), 1.9 assists (3), 0.6 blocks (0.8), 35.1 minutes (34.5), .447 FG% (.450), .265 3PT% (.800)
Advanced stats, season: 16.4 PER, .529 TS%, 28.0 USG%, 104 ORtg, 113 DRtg, -0.2 VORP
Notable: Wiggins turned 21 this past week. He scored at his usual clip but struggled in the second half of the loss at Toronto, shooting 2-for-10 from the field. He's averaging 23.3 points per game this month.
ZACH LAVINE (age 20, second season)
Statistical season averages (last week): 12.9 points (14.8), 3 rebounds (3.5), 3.2 assists (2.5), 0.2 blocks (0.5), 24.8 minutes (30.8), .439 FG% (.500), .359 3PT% (.474)
Advanced stats, season: 14.6 PER, .528 TS%, 25.6 USG%, 102 ORtg, 112 DRtg, 0.2 VORP
Notable: LaVine saw his streak of double-digit scoring games end at 12 in Wednesday's loss to Toronto, as he shot 3-for-10 and picked up five fouls in 33 minutes. Aside from that, the second-year guard continued his steady scoring contribution, including a week-high 22 in the win Monday over Boston.
ADREIAN PAYNE (age 25, second season)
Statistical season averages (last week): 2.6 points (2.0), 2.1 rebounds (2.7), 0.5 assists (0.5), 0.3 blocks (0.5), 9.4 minutes (9.3), .398 FG% (.300), .333 3PT% (.000)
Advanced stats, season: 7.7 PER, .443 TS%, 16.7 USG%, 84 ORtg, 107 DRtg, -0.3 VORP
Notable: Payne played sparingly in three games last week and was inactive during Saturday's loss to the Knicks. The Michigan State alum saw a week-high 12 minutes against Boston and scored four points on 2-for-6 shooting, also grabbing three rebounds.
KARL-ANTHONY TOWNS (age 20, first season)
Statistical season averages (last week): 17.3 points (19.8), 10.2 rebounds (10.5), 1.5 assists (2.7), 1.8 blocks (1.7), 30.6 minutes (37.7), .534 FG% (.438), .357 3PT% (.250)
Advanced stats, season: 22.7PER, .586 TS%, 24.6 USG%, 112 ORtg, 105 DRtg, 2.0 VORP
Notable: Towns posted one of his top-10 games of the season in the win over Boston, scoring 28 points on 13-for-22 shooting and grabbing 13 rebounds. He struggled in the losses to Memphis and Toronto, scoring 11 points on 4-for-15 shooting against the Grizzlies and 16 points on 5-for-13 shooting against the Raptors. The accolades keep coming for the 20-year-old rookie, but perhaps he felt some fatigue after a busy week.
NEMANJA BJELICA (age 27, first season)
Statistical season averages (last week): 4.5 points (N/A), 3.2 rebounds (N/A), 1.3 assists (N/A), 0.3 blocks (N/A), 17.9 minutes (N/A), .429 FG% (N/A), .354 3PT% (N/A)
Advanced stats, season: 9.4 PER, .549 TS%, 12.0 USG%, 107 ORtg, 109 DRtg, 0.4 VORP
Notable: Bjelica did not play this past week because of a foot strain. He has missed the past four games.
TYUS JONES (age 19, first season)
Statistical season averages (last week): 3.7 points (6.0), 1.5 rebounds (0.7), 1.9 assists (2), 0.1 blocks (0.00), 11.7 minutes (13.7), .367 FG% (.462), 0.500 3PT% (.667)
Advanced stats, season: 11.2 PER, .449 TS%, 18.7 USG%, 95 ORtg, 110 DRtg, -0.1 VORP
Notable: Jones made a momentum-changing hustle play in the win over Boston. The Apple Valley High School grad has played double-digit minutes in three of the past four games and scored a career-high nine points against the Celtics. Interim head coach Sam Mitchell said he will give Jones more minutes in the coming weeks.
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