Their esprit de corps was evident everywhere. On defense. On offense. In huddles. In their steadfast refusal to go down without a fight.
The Timberwolves won a game Wednesday night but don't be fooled into labeling it just one of 82 games in a season. Some games carry more significance than others in what they reveal and might lead to next.
The Wolves followed up their most successful month in nearly two decades with a win that felt defining, or at least signals that the team that everyone anticipated before the season is finally coming to fruition.
Down 14 to the Golden State Warriors, the Wolves dug in their heels to pull off their most gut-check win of the season, 119-114 in overtime without Rudy Gobert and Karl-Anthony Towns.
D'Angelo Russell performed his best Stephen Curry impersonation in the fourth quarter to bring the Wolves back from the precipice before fouling out 38 seconds into overtime.
Anthony Edwards shook off a cold-shooting night by attacking the entire Warriors defense for a fire-in-his-eyes driving layup.
Naz Reid showed his value with another workmanlike effort that included the final dagger, a throwdown dunk off his own miss.
Target Center exploded in boisterous appreciation for the effort. The arena finally felt like it did last season when the Wolves played a fun, entertaining, endearing style of basketball.
The Wolves have infuriated their fan base with unprofessional efforts in inexcusable losses at different times this season. The competitive fight on display against the Warriors when things looked bleak provided more evidence that the Wolves are figuring things out.
Not since 2004 had they won 11 games in any month, a benchmark the Wolves reached in January. They started February with a bang.
The Wolves clearly have found a formula that works and has put them in position to be relevant this spring, but what that looks like exactly hinges on the million-dollar question that is dangling in the distance.
How will they reintegrate Towns once he returns from a calf strain that has sidelined him for 33 games?
Edwards and Russell have flourished in expanded roles in Towns' absence. Kyle Anderson has been one the best signings in memory with his valuable impact. Teammates have become much more comfortable playing alongside Gobert on both ends after a clunky start to the marriage.
The organization has been careful not to put a timeline on Towns' return, but the assumption is that he will return at some point, which means the Wolves will go through their third iteration.
Version 1: A disjointed mess that revealed inevitable growing pains after a roster shakeup forced the Wolves to reinvent themselves by pairing two big men.
Version 2: Towns' injury forced players to re-adjust roles and learn to play without him. The process was uneven early, but January signaled a turning point.
Version 3: Towns' presence back in lineup, whenever that is. How will it work and will it affect chemistry that has been improving since December are big unknowns.
Wolves coach Chris Finch described Towns' return as "dropping a big stone into a little puddle."
"The adjustments are going to be made on the fly," he said. "They will be significant when you bring a guy of that caliber back into the lineup. But I feel like we have figured out some things, for sure, defensively probably more than offensively."
Edwards has blossomed into a bona fide star in Towns' absence. He should remain the No. 1 option on offense when Towns returns. What we've learned is that the Wolves are now Ant's team.
Finch also noted that the Wolves own the No. 1 defense in the NBA when Gobert is on the floor but are No. 28 when he's on the bench. Translation: Gobert is going to play a lot.
It's up to Towns and Finch to figure out how to re-incorporate Towns' game within a formula that is working so well right now.