Rambis installed the basics of his offensive philosophies this morning, then tested in the afternoon to see how much his new players had absorbed. Turns out, it wasn’t much in a scrimmage that was ragged to say the least.
But it did provide the first glimpse at what could be a starting lineup. In the black jerseys were Jonny Flynn and Corey Brewer in the backcourt, Ryan Gomes at small forward, Kevin Love at power forward and Al Jefferson at center.
That might have been as much as Rambis wanted to see.
“I saw a lot of things we need to work on,” Rambis said, shaking his head.
–Ryan Hollins is an athletic freak. The seven-foot center threw down the hammer countless times during the practice session, which was impressive to see in person. Fans are going to love the energy and athleticism that Hollins possesses.
“I was just happy to put on a uniform today and come out here and practice,” Brewer said. “I hadn’t practiced for real in a long time. For me and Al, it was good for both of us.”
“I had to look at the faces and numbers,” Taylor said, laughing as he unfolded the roster he had stashed in his pants pocket. “I’ve always sat here, and there’s been one or two or three new faces. It seems like everybody’s new.”
Eighteen players were on the Bresnan Arena court Tuesday morning for the first practice of the Timberwolves’ training camp, which runs through Sunday, but only five were with the team at camp here one year ago.
“Absolutely not,” Love said. “I’m 20 pounds less coming into camp than I was last year. It took me a month and a half, two months to get into shape last season. Coming into training camp in shape this year really is going to help me in the long run.”
Wolves new basketball boss David Kahn calls Love “remarkably sleeker.”
New coach Kurt Rambis terms Love’s physical condition “OK” and “good enough” for what Rambis will expect from him on a team instructed to run, run, run this season.
No one has to whisper in Brewer’s ear. He already knows what’s up.
“I can sense things,” Brewer said. “A lot of people are wondering what I’m going to do. My rookie year wasn’t good, and last year I got hurt. Now it’s time to prove myself. I’m up for the task.”
McCants is carrying an abdominal injury that limits his immediate availability, so Houston has opted to sign Beck — who played for San Antonio’s summer-league team — to a non-guaranteed deal.