The Great NBA Reshuffling of 2019 saw seismic shifts of talent, the aftershocks of which are still rumbling.
Kawhi Leonard, Anthony Davis, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Kyrie Irving, Kemba Walker, and Paul George all switched teams!
So did Jake Layman, Jordan Bell, and Noah Vonleh.
OK, so there's a bit of a dropoff in talent and accomplishments from one list of names to the next. But darn it, those second three guys are suiting up for your Minnesota Timberwolves, who'll need maximum contributions from them and everyone just to make the playoffs.
Preseason predictions look pretty grim: NBA.com's expert says 30 wins should be seen as a "ceiling," ESPN and the Ringer rank Minnesota the 21st and 22nd best team in the league, respectively, and last week perennial enigma Andrew Wiggins was compelled to argue there aren't 100 (!) better NBA players than him.
There is some good news for the Timberwolves: The catering is going to be bomb this year.
Today, the team announced it had hired KZ ProVisioning, the sports-team-specific company launched by Twin Cities food stars Gavin Kaysen (much-decorated for Minneapolis' Spoon & Stable, and Bellcour in Wayzata) and Andrew Zimmern (of Travel Channel fame, nationally, and Lucky Cricket locally).
The team announcement focuses on the scientific and nutritional aspirations of this partnership, with talk of "proprietary technology to aggregate game data, practice data, hydration monitoring, dietary preferences as well dietary sensitivities," "physiological needs," and "complex data."
And here's an Instagram post from Kaysen promising how well they will "get to know" players' bodies.
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A dream that has become a reality! I am proud to announce that @chefaz and I along with our company @kzprovisioning have partnered with the @timberwolves. We will be the chefs for this team, commitment is beyond just delicious food, but feeding the players with the goal that we will know their bodies better then they will, strength comes from so much, a good diet, good sleep and nutrition, we will do everything we can to support this team as they begin to transform into a new era under the leadership of @gerssonrosas and #coachsaunders - many thanks to @chefjameskent and the team @crownshynyc for hosting us last night!
Aside from providing custom meals for players while in town, the company will "evaluate restaurants on the road" and "execute food orders" for players. (Out-of-town players visiting Minneapolis are encouraged to trust the basketball and nutritional experts at City Pages.)
In the only phrase and assessment that really counts, Wolves draft pick Jarret Culver says KZ's food is "really good," and indeed, a perusal of the catering team's Instagram might inspire you to finally get off the couch and work on your ability to dunk in traffic.
The Timberwolves assignment is the second such deal for KZ ProVisioning, which also provides meals for the Minnesota Wild. The local hockey team missed the playoffs last year, and has started this season looking like the worst team in the NHL's Western Conference. But at least you don't hear them complaining about lunch?