The Wolves Beat
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Ricky Rubio looked worn out.

He might have been speaking for himself in particular when he said after the Timberwolves 118-99 loss to Phoenix that the Wolves "need the break," as in the upcoming All-Star break.

Lots of losing led to a coaching change which has led to four more losses and no wins under new coach Chris Finch, who has been in charge for a week.

It left Rubio feeling despondent.

"There's a lot of things we have to figure out and correct and get better," Rubio said. "We got to start somewhere and hopefully the next few days we fix that … It's more on us to compete, be in every game, start with everybody. Kat [Karl-Anthony Towns], Ant [Anthony Edwards], me, got to lead out there. Everybody got to do a better job."

It's one thing to lose a lot when you're a young and developing team. But the way the Wolves have lost has made it hard to see if there has been any noticeable difference in how they're playing. The Wolves are getting blown out regularly, which leads to a lot of garbage time. They have barely been healthy enough to play together, as D'Angelo Russell and Towns have played in just five games together overall. That makes it hard to evaluate the roster in its entirety to figure who might best go with those players.

The reliance on young, developing talent behind them has led to a lot of losing, a 7-28 record.

The Wolves have been big on talking about developing a winning culture, but it's hard to do that when there isn't much evidence of success.

"There is some evidence it may work like what happened with Philadelphia, I guess," Rubio said. " 'Trust the process' when they went like two, three years, really bad and then they started winning. I kind of don't believe in that kind of system. We have to build good habits from Day One and I don't think we are in the right way to be honest."

Rubio pointed to an example in Sunday's game when the Suns called the same play for Devin Booker, who had 43 points. Booker scored in different ways off the play, Rubio said, but the Wolves were helpless to stop it.

"We were calling the play, and we couldn't stop it," Rubio said. "And it's because we're not ready to take it to the next level."

On a larger level, Rubio said the Wolves aren't learning from their mistakes.

"If you do the same mistake over and over again, it means you're not learning," Rubio said. "Learning through mistakes as a young team can happen, but then make different mistakes. I think we're doing the same mistakes over and over."

Rubio wasn't the only one frustrated.

"I try to compete as hard as I can and do as much as I can, but it's never enough," Edwards said. "We got to figure out how to get that extra push and encourage each other to keep going. We haven't done enough."

As Rubio said, they need the break.