MINNEAPOLIS The coach whose name is synonymous with an offense is shocking everyone with his focus on defense.
Rick Adelman has pioneered his corner offense, which is focused on quick cuts and versatile players. He's been implementing it in pieces since joining the Timberwolves last season, but this preseason, he paused. Instead, the team spent the first four days of training camp working heavily on defense, and early on, it's paid off.
The Timberwolves gave up an average of 80.9 points per game to their opponents this preseason. It's a ridiculous and unsustainable figure; last season, the Bulls' defense led the NBA by giving up an average of 88.2 points. In fact, since 1970, the best defense of any team belongs to the 1998-99 Atlanta Hawks, who gave up 83.4 points per game in a shortened, 50-game season.
So no, this isn't going to last. It's the preseason, after all, where nothing means anything (at least until it's replicated when games matter). However, sustaining good defens...