The Minnesota Timberwolves picked up a huge win on Sunday, as they came back from a double-digit deficit to beat the New Orleans Pelicans to vault into the 8-seed in the West and give themselves two cracks at the postseason, starting with a road trip in L.A. to face the Lakers on Tuesday night.
However, the win didn’t come without ample drama and some serious concern going forward in Minnesota. For one, Jaden McDaniels fractured his hand punching a wall and seems likely to be done for the postseason, ridding the Timberwolves of one of their best defenders. That was somehow not the most talked about punch, as Rudy Gobert swung on Kyle Anderson during an argument on the bench in the second quarter and got sent home by the team.
Rudy Gobert appears to punch Kyle Anderson in the huddle. pic.twitter.com/MYWGYIrrL3
— Action Network (@ActionNetworkHQ) April 9, 2023
After the game, the team said the situation would be handled internally, but did not offer any information on whether Gobert would miss any of the play-in as well.
"We made the decision to send Rudy Gobert home after the incident in the second quarter. His behavior on the bench was unacceptable and we will handle the situation internally."
— Statement from Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly.
— Jon Krawczynski (@JonKrawczynski) April 9, 2023
This is the second high-profile incident involving teammates this season, as the year began with Draymond Green punching Jordan Poole at practice and getting sent home for the start of the season. After that altercation, Rudy Gobert sent this tweet taking a jab at Green.
Insecurity is always loud.
— Rudy Gobert (@rudygobert27) October 7, 2022
Naturally, Green recognized his opportunity on Sunday to return the favor to Gobert, who he is not shy about despising, sending the exact same tweet following Rudy punching Anderson.
Insecurity is always loud…
— Draymond Green (@Money23Green) April 9, 2023
Draymond isn’t one to miss an opportunity like this, and this is just incredibly well executed. The Warriors will enjoy a week off after locking up the 6-seed before facing the Kings in the first round, and Green seems delighted by that and by watching another team seemingly combust under pressure, particularly another team where Gobert is a prominent figure.