The Timberwolves played on without Ricky Rubio's inventive playmaking and offensive flair on Monday in Phoenix, three days after he tore a knee ligament and is now lost for the season.

For all that he provided at that end, they might miss his defense more. Rubio was third in the league in steals, at 2.22 a game, when he was injured.

"I think we're really going to miss him there because he's really good at keeping his guy in front of him," Wolves coach Rick Adelman said. "That's probably the biggest thing. The way we play is going to change some and that concerns me more than anything else. We have to be solid defensively if we're going to be able to play a different way and we weren't that way against New Orleans.

"We may have to tweak things and come at it from a different way now. It's not so much the X's and O's, it's the energy level he always brought us."