Rambis era begins tonight for T'Woves vs. NetsMinnesota Sports - The Minnesota Timberwolves season opener is tonight vs. the New Jersey Nets at the Target Center, the first game in Kurt Rambis' NBA head coaching career.
Courtsey of the Sports Network.com
MINNEAPOLIS - The Kurt Rambis era kicks off tonight for the Minnesota Timberwolves, who will host the New Jersey Nets in the season opener for both clubs from the Target Center.
Rambis became the ninth head coach in the team's 20-year history had been an assistant with the Los Angeles Lakers for 10 seasons, helping the team to NBA titles in 2002 and 2009. He also compiled a 24-13 record as interim coach during the lockout-shortened 1998-99 campaign following the dismissal of Del Harris.
Rambis, who was a finalist for the head coaching vacancy in Sacramento and interviewed for the same position in Philadelphia, succeeds Kevin McHale, who was fired in June after he had moved from the front office to the bench following Randy Wittman's dismissal in early December. The Wolves finished just 24-58 last season.
The new head coach won't have second-year forward Kevin Love in the lineup after the former UCLA star suffered a broken left hand in the preseason and is expected to miss six to eight weeks. However, star forward Al Jefferson is expected to suit up despite an Achilles' injury. Jefferson missed 32 games last season because of surgery to repair a torn ACL in his right knee.
New Jersey sent leading scorer Vince Carter to Orlando this offseason for shooting guard Courtney Lee, center Tony Battie and veteran point guard Rafer Alston in return. All-Star guard Devin Harris is back for another campaign and is head coach Lawrence Frank's top scorer. Harris averaged a season-high 21.3 points per game last season.
The Nets and 'Wolves have split the last eight meetings, but Minnesota has won seven of the last 11 matchups in the series. New Jersey has lost six straight and eight of nine trips to the Target Center.