The Best Timberwolves team, '03-'04 vs. '23-'24.

The Best Timberwolves Team of All Time

Basketball Timberwolves

Alright Minnesota sports fans, I’ve been pondering this question since our beloved Minnesota Timberwolves have made this fantastic run in the NBA Playoffs (#wolvesback). While we may all have recency bias, don’t forget our 2003-2004 squad. That squad was loaded, finishing as runner-up to the Los Angeles Lakers in the West. I thought it would be a fun little hypothetical if we took the two best teams in franchise history and pitted them against one another. Let’s find out who the best Timberwolves team is of all time!

Minnesota Timberwolves logo.
Minnesota Timberwolves logo.

Team Comparison

Alright, let’s dive into the best Timberwolves team of all time by looking at some of the statistics that each squad accomplished.

2003-2004

Wins: 58 Losses: 24

PPG: 94.5 OPP PPG: 89.1

Rank in Conference: 1st

Playoff Result: Lost in Western Conference Finals 4-2

2023-2024

Wins: 56 Loses: 26

PPG: 113 OPP PPG: 106.5

Rank in Conference: 3rd

Playoff Results: Lost in Western Conference Finals 4-1

Advantage

As much fun as this year was, I was just a kid and wasn’t jaded with social media and all that crap when that 2003-2004 squad went on a magical run. It was probably more memorable as a youth, I still remember watching the Sacramento (this team was also loaded) series going seven games. Plus, that is when I was heavily into basketball (Centennial C-team baby!). I’ll give the advantage to the ’03-’04 squad based upon winning more games in the Conference Finals and overall rank in the respective conference.

*Blogger note: Don’t come at me with the game has changed, so you can’t compare the two. Last time I checked, all that matters is to score more points than your opponent*

Roster Comparison

Starting Five Comparison

2003-20042023-2024
Sam CassellMike Conley
Trenton HassellJaden McDaniels
Latrell SprewellAnthony Edwards
Kevin GarnettKarl Anthony-Towns
Ervin JohnsonRudy Gobert
Rosters shown, depict the most frequently used roster for the corresponding regular season.
Rudy Gobert of this year's Timberwolves squad.
Rudy Gobert indicating that the refs are paid by the NBA to rig games.

Key Bench Players

2003-20042023-2024
Fred HoibergNaz Reid
Troy HudsonKyle Anderson
Mark MadsenNickeil Alexander-Walker
Wally Szczerbiak
Bench or spot starters that impacted the team’s success.
Kyle Anderson of this year's Timberwolves squad.
Kyle Anderson, probably celebrating something stupid and not contributing to the team.

It’s fun looking back at the ’03-’04 roster. You got KG, Ervin “Not Magic” Johnson, Spree, Sam “Big Nuts” Casell, Wally’s World, THud, and Maddawg. Such a fun group, plus all the nicknames, gotta love it.

Roster of '03-'04 Timberwolves, included Wally, Sam, KG, Michael, Troy.
The greatest Wolves squad, included Wally, Sam, KG, Michael, and Troy.

This year’s Wolves squad has Ant, NAW, and KAT (I’m not sure if NAZ REID, really counts as a nickname, but screw it). Let’s hope we can find some more opportunities for better nicknames next year.

NAZ REID.
NAZ REID!

Advantage

This year’s squad has more talent, but in terms of overall team, I have to give it to the OG’s and our 2003-2004 team. The bench was more deep, and the continued rotation of multiple guards or centers at times would leave this team better rested. I felt that this was one area where this year’s squad stumbled in the playoffs, the bench while led by 6th Man of the Year Naz Reid, didn’t have enough regular rotation guys, that could spell our stars who got into foul trouble or were just gassed.

Conclusion

I think that the 2003-2004 squad would be the best Timberwolves team of all time. My prediction is that they will win a series 4-1 against this year’s squad. Give me KG trash-talking, Hoiberg making threes, Sprewell (maybe choking out a coach) being Spree, and mother-fucking Sam Cassell going nuts out for the boys.

Don’t get me wrong, it was fun while it lasted, but our current Timberwolves still have a long way to go. It will be exciting to see what they do in the off-season and what parts they bring in to complement Ant and KAT. This year’s team needs to channel that KG energy into next year.

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