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Without Butler, Wolves move on with warm welcome for newbies


MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – When Robert Covington, Dario Saric and Jerryd Bayless entered their hotel rooms in Minnesota, they found appropriate gifts from Timberwolves All-Star Karl-Anthony Towns: winter coats.


After the temperature of the night lowered. At 7 degrees, the newest members of the team through Jimmy Butler’s exchange with Philadelphia appreciated the welcome of the best Minnesota player. The uncomfortable and prolonged departure of Butler created an icy atmosphere around the organization, but now that the agreement is finally over, the Wolves have begun to try to warm the atmosphere again.


“We can not wait to get to the court, put on that shirt and put it in this city,” Covington told a press conference at the Target Center on Tuesday afternoon that he had a little less enthusiasm than the open presentation Butler at the Mall of America less than 17 months ago.


When Butler formally joined the 76ers, the Wolves spun forward after a win to ease the pressure on Brooklyn on Monday night after a 0-5 road trip.


Neither Covington nor Saric played against the Nets, but they are on the right track Wednesday night against New Orleans. Bayless is injured, rehabilitating a hyperextended right knee, and with a lot of top guards on the list, he is not expected to see the game time once he is healthy. Both Covington and Saric were holders for the Sixers, who finished third in the Eastern Conference last season with 52-30.


“They’re both young and they’re going to improve, they’re both very good defensively, they both win 3. We think they fit well with the guys we have,” said basketball operations president and coach Tom Thibodeau. “Once we got to that point where we felt we were getting multiple rotating players, we felt it would be time to execute the agreement, when we started, that was not the case.”


As to whether the Thibodeau was upset. “19609002]” We have to focus on who is here. We believe we have a good, young core, and that the Timberwolves could be better without Butler, the four-time All-Star with exceptional ability at both ends of the court. we have to build on that, “said Thibodeau.


Covington is the centerpiece of the package.


The 27-year-old, who was not drafted from the state of Tennessee and started in the NBA with Houston in the 2013-14 season, he has career averages of 12.6 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game with a shooting percentage of 35.9 in the 3-point range.The 6-foot-9 Covington was the first fully defensive team to select last season with 315 deflections and a defensive rating of 99.0 that led all the league forwards with at least 30 minutes per game.He was ninth in the NBA in steals with an average of 1.7 per game.


That’s the area where it will most help the Timberwolves, the area that Butler also acquired to help improve.


“In order to stay in this league and be effective, you must be able to go there and stop someone at the other end,” he said. Covington, and added: “I think that and I saw more movies in the first years than me. ” “I have seen my whole life, in terms of different types and seeing how they read certain things and build the habits of seeing the players and everything, so I would say that the last two seasons are when everything started to click”.

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