Skip to main content

Get To Know Him - Alexey Shved

Living in Connecticut, I obviously do not get many opportunities to watch the Minnesota Timberwolves play, nor did I honestly have any desire to.  But Thursday night I got to watch Ricky Rubio and Kevin Love thanks to TNT.  The Timberwolves handled the Thunder and what I was most impressed with by the end of the night was rookie guard Alexey Shved.  Then on Sunday night, the Knicks hosted the Timberwolves and once again, Shved impressed.  He CLEARLY has learned a thing or two from both Ricky Rubio and JJ Barea as his style of play proves to be a blend of them and his stroke from downtown is beautiful to watch.  So how did this talent make his way to the NBA and how did the Timberwolves land him?

Shved, 23, has spent the last six seasons playing professionally in Russia. In 2011-12, the 6-foot-6 guard averaged 11.6 points, 3.0 rebounds and 3.3 assists in 23 Russian League games with CSKA Moscow. The Belgorod, Russia native was named the 2012 BEKO PBL Playoffs MVP by Sports Express after leading his club to the Russian National Championship, averaging 14.3 points, 2.3 rebounds and 4.0 assists while shooting 60.0 percent from beyond the arc during the postseason.  -

The 24 year old 6'6 guard from Russia has been on the NBAs radar since 2006!  He went undrafted for some reason in this years draft and the Timberwolves, Thunder and Grizzlies were all rumored to be chasing after him.  He eventually signed with the Timberwolves on July 25, 2012 for 3 years and around $9.5 million.  The Russian guard joined an international loaded roster that features Ricky Rubio from Spain, J.J. Barea from Puerto Rico, Andrei Kirilenko from Russia, & Nikola Pekovic from Croatia. 

Alexey really showed me three things weekend:
  1. Shved and Pekovic have GREAT chemistry on the pick and roll, and Shved can find that guy from anywhere on the court as witnessed by the pass from beyond the arc while double teamed to a rolling Pek in the paint (0:34 mark)
  2. Shved and Love run a great pick and pop around the permiter as teams either double Shved and he hits Love for the open jumper, or Love gets the double and gives it back to Shved beyond the arc from the open 3
  3. Shved can shoot the ball, knocking down 6 of 13 3pt shots and 12 of 26 overall in the 2 games
His skill set allows him to play the PG, SG and SF position which was also witnessed this weekend.  He started at the SF position Sunday night against the Knicks as the Wolves decided to start J.J. Barea, Luke Ridnour and Shved against a small Knicks team.  This is a huge plus because it will allow Shved to stay on the court even when Rubio is fully healthy. 

Yes his game logs shows some inconsistency, but the Wolves health issues have forced coach Rick Adelman to run many different starting lineups.  It will be interesting to see how the Timberwolves rotations work themselves out when Brandon Roy returns, and Ricky Rubio playes 34+ minutes.  Shved is playing well enough to stay on the court, but you never know how much value a coach puts on veteran players and leadership, and that is what J.J Barea and his championship ring bring to the Timberwolves roster.