Chris Finch is about to begin his third full season coaching the Timberwolves next month, as he’s excited to see his players growth during the summer. The Minnesota franchise has been out of the title-contending picture for well over a decade now, but last campaign they were at least able to qualify for the playoffs with a 42-40 mark.
The 53-year-old trainer admitted to feeling satisfied with the roster moves made by his administration this offseason, as well as recovering star players like Karl-Anthony Towns back from injury.
“What I like is, we were able to add a little backcourt and wing depth with Shake [Milton] and Troy [Brown Jr.] coming in, guys who are versatile and help fill our roster needs,” he said. “Obviously getting healthy — getting KAT back healthy — and then taking what we learned through the moments when we were all together last year and then build, be better prepared going into this season with the two bigs.
“We’re really excited about all our guys who played this summer internationally and certainly, Anthony’s continued emergence there.”
With the Wolves beginning training camp this week… Chris Finch on Anthony Edwards’ summer: pic.twitter.com/d3nqqyZjsX
— Dane Moore (@DaneMooreNBA) September 25, 2023
As for rising star Anthony Edwards, who many dub as the next player who will dominate the league, his coach feels proud to have seen him lead Team USA through many games this summer. “I believe so. I think, coupled with his personality, it’s also kind of natural for him to handle these dynamics,” Finch said.
When asked if he seems too eager to step up and take spotlight in Minnesota, his trainer believes the 22-year-old is much more mature than he’s perceived.
“No, I don’t feel that at all. He naturally works hard for his teammates. Wants to see them succeed. Wants to bring them along with his success. And I think he still understands that he still has room to grow. He knows he doesn’t know it all, doesn’t have it all figured out. At the same time, he knows he needs his teammates to help him get there,” Finch made clear.
The Wolves coach addressed the belief that Rudy Gobert received too much blame for the team’s failures
Last season, the expectation around Rudy Gobert was enormous. You can argue that he didn’t live up to his potential in his first campaign in Minnesota, but probably received too much blame when his squad wasn’t performing.
According to coach Finch, the French center should improve this season now that Towns is healthy again.
“Yeah, going into last season, we felt like it would really take 40 or 50 games to really catch a rhythm with it all. And with that span of time, you’re going to see a lot of defenses, schemes, coverages, things you’re going to have to adjust to. So you’d have a frame of reference going forward. And we really didn’t have that,” he explained.
In the video above, check out J.J. Redick’s recent interview with the Minnesota trainer as they talk about his journey coaching the Wolves.
“We were trying to figure it out for 20 games when he got hurt, and it was some good, some bad,” Finch kept defending Rudy. “Then when he came back at the end of the season, it was literally ‘Get in, fit in and try to figure it out on the fly. And he did a good job for the most part of just trying to find his own rhythm. It wasn’t disruptive. But we didn’t optimize it.”