Key to correcting transition D woes is simply effort, Kevin Love says
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Caught in a mini-two game slide, the Minnesota Timberwolves (7-6) are hoping to avoid dropping to the .500 mark Friday with the Brooklyn Nets in town.
The key to doing so may in part rely on eliminating the sudden breakdowns that have popped up within the Wolves' transition defense. The problems have indeed been abrupt this week. On Monday, Minnesota had surrendered the NBA's fourth-lowest point total off the fastbreak (10.8 ppg).
A disastrous 33 points allowed in transition in a loss to the Wizards started the Wolves' week on an obviously sour note. The Clippers only made matters worse, taking advantage of their openings for 25 points off the fastbreak. In that two-game stretch, untimely Minnesota turnovers near midcourt have created many of those opportunities.
Coach Rick Adelman's take on the defensive lapses shortly before taking on the Clippers Wednesday hold true in regards to the problems that occurred both nights.
"Transition defense is not going to be there if you turn the ball over in breakouts like (against the Clippers)," Adelman said. "It was our turnovers that caused us the most problems. That's not what we do normally. I just thought that we were very casual with the ball. We made very poor decisions. That just fed them."
For Kevin Love, the cure to stopping the transition letdowns from becoming an ongoing issue comes down to one key factor.
"Effort," Love said Friday morning during shootaround. "I think effort's really the biggest thing. We made teams guard us in transition. We have to do the same to them. We're going to have a number of tests next 10 games, and we're going to have to go out there and show what we're made of."