Utah Jazz back-up point guard Jamaal Tinsley left Friday morning’s shoot-around with a cast on his left wrist, but he plans to play tonight against Minnesota.
In the last three games, Tinsley has provided a lift while giving starter Mo Williams a breather. He’s handed out 13 assists in only 45 minutes while going 4-for-7 from the three-point line.
Beyond Tinsley and back-up center Enes Kanter, who is out for the rest of the season following shoulder surgery, the Jazz are healthy.
Marvin Williams missed Tuesday night’s 90-80 loss to Oklahoma City with a stomach illness, but he participated in the shoot-around and will play.
Guard Alec Burks, who has missed the last two games because of a sprained ankle, will also be available against the Timberwolves.
The Jazz, of course, desperately need a victory over Minnesota to stay alive in the Western Conference playoff race. Utah is 41-38 and trails the Los Angeles Lakers by one game in the race for eighth place. Both teams have three games remaining.
According to Al Jefferson, the Jazz are trying to enjoy the thrill of the hunt, not the pressure that goes along with it.
“... We know how important these last three games [are],” Jefferson said, “but it’s really kind of fun to be competing all the way to the end. If you’re a competitor who really cares about the game, this is fun for you.
“It can also be a little stressful sometimes, especially when you are watching a team and they’re in control of what happens to you. But for the most part it’s fun. I’m taking at it as a sign of respect — that we put ourselves in this position to have a chance to fight for the playoffs.”