Wolves' Tyus Jones steals the show as starter
Welcome to the 2017-18 edition of the Timberpups Tracker. This year, we're taking a different tact. With Minnesota having taken over a G League franchise in Iowa, and renaming it the Wolves, each Thursday we'll either track the progress of the players who might be of help to the Timberwolves in the future or a current member of the Minnesota roster. We'll also give updates on the other young players from the previous week.
This is the 6th edition of the 2017-18 Timberpups Tracker.
SPOTLIGHT ON …
Point guard Tyus Jones
The hype never subsided.
Not when he was inactive for long stretches as a rookie, or when the Wolves signed All-Star point guard Jeff Teague to replace playmaker Ricky Rubio.
But with Teague on the shelf indefinitely as he recovers from an MCL sprain, the #FreeTyus faithful are finally getting an extended look at their guy.
He might not be stealing the spotlight away from Jimmy Butler and Karl-Anthony Towns, but he's certainly trying.
His thievery has provided added an interesting new wrinkle to the Wolves' offense.
Jones leads the NBA with 3.4 steals per 48 minutes and a 3.6 steal percentage while averaging 2.09 steals to every turnover, another league best. Those steals are leading to offense. Jones also ranks third in assist-to-turnover ratio at 4.0.
He's been at the top of his game since taking over for Teague, racking up five steals and five assists in his first game as the starter. Jones has averaged 7.0 points, 4.3 assists, 3.0 steals and 2.3 rebounds per game in four starts.
He's averaging a plus-minus of +16.5 over that span, including a +30 in the Wolves' 17-point win over the Indiana Pacers on New Year's Eve, and followed that up with a +27 against the Los Angeles Lakers.
-- The Iowa Wolves have won five straight. Amile Jefferson led the way in their latest win, logging his 11th double-double of the season in their most recent victory, a 95-86 win over the Greensboro Swarm.
-- Anthony Brown poured in 10 3-pointers and finished with 35 points in the Iowa Wolves' 124-102 win over Oklahoma City.
-- Karl-Anthony Towns had his customary double-double Wednesday in the Wolves' loss to the Brooklyn Nets, finishing with 16 points and 10 rebounds, but didn't contribute any other stats in 40 minutes.