Flynn plays well in start but Wolves lose both the game and Beasley
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Jonny Flynn played one of his best games of the season Friday night. That is the good news.
But -- as has been the case all season for the Minnesota Timberwolves -- one step forward means two steps back.
The Wolves lost to the Toronto Raptors -- who had lost 13 consecutive games -- 111-100 and once again lost Michael Beasley to another sprained ankle.
This coming just six days after the Wolves beat the Raptors at home 103-87.
Flynn started his second consecutive game of the season while Luke Ridnour is away from the team dealing with a personal issue.
Flynn finished with eight points, seven assists, three turnovers and at times demonstrated the ability to be a capable starting point guard.
'At times' and 'one of his best games' should be taken lightly as Flynn's play has been a lot to be desired since returning from hip surgery but nonetheless it is a step in the right direction for a team desperate not to have to say 'uncle' on him.
With no offense to Ridnour, the Wolves should be starting Flynn at this point just to see what they have in last season's fifth-overall draft pick. Ridnour was brought in to serve as a backup/mentor to Flynn and it is in the best interest for the Wolves to implement that plan.
There is no question that Ridnour is a better overall point guard than Flynn but the Wolves need to see enough of him to make an informed decision on what they want to do with him. It is no secret that the Woves are hoping Ricky Rubio is the point guard next season so building up Flynn's trade value is crucial and that can't happen while sitting on the bench.
With Ridnour out, Sebastian Telfair also got an opportunity to showcase his skills and made an outstanding case that he should also be playing more as well. Telfair has been dealt tough combination of plantar fasciitis -- which he recently got an injection for -- and lack of plying time. Despite being 3-5 as a starter this season, Telfair was relegated to bench and has admitted frustration.
Telfair scored 16 points on 5-of-10 shooting and led the Wolves down the stretch but did not record a single assist and turned the ball over three times.
It seems the Wolves are content having Ridnour be a backup -- that was the reason they signed him -- so with just 11 wins, logic says it is time to play and build up the trade value of Flynn or Telfair to use at either the deadline or this summer.
Raptors' point guard Jose Calderon magnified the Wolves need for improved play at the one by throwing up 19 assists in the victory.
Kevin Love extended his double-double streak to 35 games after being told he was selected by Commissioner David Stern to replace injured Yao Ming in the All-Star game after finding out Thursday he was not voted in by the coaches. He finished with 20 points and 15 rebounds.
Love is now just two games shy of tying Kevin Garnett's franchise record of 37 double-doubles.
Beasley re-sprained his left ankle midway through the second quarter and did not return. It is the same ankle that caused Beasley to miss two games in January and leave three more early. The severity of the injury is unknown but he is believed to be day-to-day.
No time to rest for the Wolves, they are right back it at it Saturday night at home against the Denver Nuggets where Love is sure to get a heroes welcome for being selected to the All-Star game.