Pistons face Timberwolves in... Winnipeg?

Jennifer Stewart-US PRESSWIRE

Detroit faces Minnesota for pre-season game 7 in seemingly arbitrary Winnepeg, Canada. That sentence makes me cold just reading it.

"How will the Minnesota Timberwolves cut it without Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio", imaginary reporter asks. Nikola Pekovic answers matter-of-factly, without looking at the reporter, "UCLA primadonna and Spanish girl don't matter, I just get all rebounds and score all points. Chicago Bulls frontcourt is dickheads." Moments later, Pekovic carried the Timberwolves to a 82-75 preseason win over the Bulls by adding 17 points and 16 rebounds. "Now I find Bozo Clown center guy sister and make triple double."

Fortunately for Detroit, Pekovic only fears one thing: Moose.

The Situation:

Despite another year without a playoff berth, the Minnesota Timberwolves sport one of the league's more impressive rosters. Kevin Love plays like a superstar, Nikola Pekovic plays like a gangster, Ricky Rubio knows how to run an offense and the rest of the team is deep, stacked and talented. Brandon Roy has played his way back into the NBA and back into a starting lineup, and his preseason numbers reflect the potential of bringing a lot of help to Minnesota. Then there's Andrei Kirilenko on the wing and Derrick Williams beside him, then add Chase Budinger, JJ Barea and Luke Ridnour. This team is deep, talented and has the recipe for a 2nd round playoff team.

Seriously, you don't say this every day-- hats off to David Khan.

It's looking like the Wolves will start another year in the stink, as they'll be without Kevin Love or Ricky Rubio at least until December. What happens when the team has a healthy squad for the following four months... well that could be pretty exciting. If they can stay healthy, this has the makings for a playoff team even in the rough Western Conference.

Tonight, they'll bring their B-squad to Winnepeg to face the Pistons. Sadly, that should be an even match-up tonight.

Keys to the Game:

Feed the Moose, Start the Bull, Free the Swede: I think this might be my nightly refrain for the 2012-13 season.

Push the pace, but take care of the ball: Detroit has played at a faster pace this preseason, but they've had trouble taking care of the ball. If the Pistons want to run and gun in the regular season, tonight would be a good time to work on those turnovers.

Avoid Khandor's Lair at all costs: Detroit is dangerously close to Khandor's Lair tonight, which could spell tragedy for the team.

Question of the Game:

Bull/Moose frontcourt pairing. May we see it please? Thank you.

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