Blog Entry

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

Posted on: June 23, 2009 11:13 pm
Edited on: June 24, 2009 6:24 pm
The keys to the draft are now tucked neatly in the hands of the Minnesota Timberwolves.

A flurry of pre-draft trade activity on Tuesday left Minnesota’s new GM, David Kahn, with four first-round picks – including the fifth and sixth – with clear designs on using at least two of them to move as high as needed to snag Spanish point guard Ricky Rubio or UConn center Hasheem Thabeet.

Or both.

The next 10 picks after the Clippers take Blake Griffin are no longer a bore. And if this works out the way Kahn envisions, neither are the Timberwolves.

To recap: Pending league approval, Minnesota has agreed to acquire Washington’s No. 5 overall pick along with Etan Thomas, Oleksiy Pecherov and Darius Songaila for Randy Foye and Mike Miller. With the fifth, sixth, 18th, and 28th picks, Minnesota is far from finished. A person familiar with the team’s plans said Minnesota is loaded for a run at Rubio, the gifted but raw 18-year-old point guard, and Thabeet, the 7-3 shot-blocker who would finally replace Kevin Garnett’s inside presence. “In a perfect world, both,” said the person with knowledge of Minnesota’s master plan.

Either way, this sends shivers through the Sacramento front office, which seemed to be hoping Rubio would be available with the No. 4 pick. Even more so, Kahn appears to have trumped his former boss with the Indiana Pacers, Knicks president Donnie Walsh, who has done a commendable job persuading some rival executives to believe that coach Mike D’Antoni wanted Rubio. But as much as Rubio’s play-making skills could energize D’Antoni’s free-wheeling, pick-and-roll offense, the player the Knicks covet is Davidson’s Stephen Curry, according to a high-level management source with knowledge of the team’s plans. But the Knicks believe they may not be able to land Curry with the eighth pick, as evidenced by their serious talks with Washington about the No. 5 selection – talks that stalled, according to a person familiar with them, when the Wizards balked at taking back Jared Jeffries and his $6.9 million player option for 2010-11.

Minnesota had to give up two proven commodities in Foye and Miller, and the deal came together like a perfect storm because of Washington’s desire to add veterans to its core of Gilbert Arenas, Caron Butler, and Antawn Jamison. The Wizards entertained numerous offers for the fifth pick, even exploring a deal with Phoenix that would’ve yielded Amare Stoudemire. They backed away from that one when the Suns asked for Butler.

In a draft in which team executives see no can’t-miss stars after Griffin, the Wizards didn’t want or need to pay a lottery pick to join a team that management believes is ready to contend now with a veteran roster and experienced coach, Flip Saunders. The trade also accomplished the Wizards’ goals of creating a roster spot and not taking back any salary beyond next season. The impact on Washington’s 2010-11 payroll is a wash.

The day began with a report that the Celtics had engaged in low-level discussions with the Pistons about a blockbuster scenario that would’ve sent Rajon Rondo and Ray Allen to Detroit for a package including Richard Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince, and Rodney Stuckey. The talks never went anywhere, but sparked league-wide curiosity about Boston management’s level of discontent with Rondo.

The Spurs struck first in what is shaping up to be a frenzied trading period, acquiring Richard Jefferson from Milwaukee for Bruce Bowen, Kurt Thomas, and Fabricio Oberto. It was a clear sign that the Spurs are determined to make at least one more championship run with their core of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobili. For Milwaukee, acquiring $11.3 million in contracts that expire after next season clears cap space to re-sign promising guard Ramon Sessions.

Oberto was, in turn, sent to Detroit for Amir Johnson as the Pistons continue obliterating their roster in preparation for the 2010 free-agent frenzy. Joe Dumars now has only three players under contract for 2010-11 – Prince, Stuckey, and Arron Affalo. UPDATE: The Pistons plan to buy out Oberto, thus trimming more payroll for next season.

So, welcome to the 2009 NBA draft, a.k.a. the new trade deadline.

Since: Jun 21, 2008
Posted on: June 25, 2009 9:03 am

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

Your an idiot... Epic Fail!!

Richard Jefferson went to the spurs.. Not Al jefferson

Since: Apr 17, 2008
Posted on: June 25, 2009 12:11 am

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

As a reluctant Wizards fan I love this move.  We get two players, one who will start and the other, Miller off the bench who will contribute immensely.

Both are good at giving up the ball while playing decent defense and the occassional steal, both toss up three's like the flip ball and the Wiz like.  Both are under rated rebounders, and both are proven commodities in the NBA.  Something the 5th pick is not.

The key is is Arenas.  If he can play 70 games I will see this as one hell of a fun team to watch and compete.

Pechorov was a 2006 bust.
Thomas is a medical liability but he is a leader who will be missed.
Songaila is nothing special.

Considering the bleak draft picks of the Wizards past, good!

nick Young appears to be the only decent pick of the last 10 first rounds.

Since: Jul 28, 2008
Posted on: June 24, 2009 11:04 pm

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

RICHARD Jefferson from the Bucks was traded, not AL Jefferson...

Since: Jan 1, 2009
Posted on: June 24, 2009 10:55 pm

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

different jefferson. we're talking about 'big al'. you're talking about jefferson from the bucks.

Since: Aug 22, 2006
Posted on: June 24, 2009 8:40 pm

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

Would he? I mean he could still get major minutes as a six-man. I mean Thabeet fouls, a lot. So having Kevin Love as a backup plan wouldn't be bad at all. I think they would need to find a go-to shooter with Miller and Foye leaving. Free agents maybe?

Since: Jun 15, 2009
Posted on: June 24, 2009 7:04 pm

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

I would say this almost sounds like a good move.........................but I don't trust Minnesota.  (tha twolves, not the state. The state is cool)

RUBIO!  Should be fun to watch it pan out and stuff

Since: Sep 13, 2007
Posted on: June 24, 2009 4:53 pm

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

I totally agree with you, except for one view you left out for true MN TWOLVE fans, are whatever's left of them thanks to McHale. I'd rather get guys in a so so draft talent pool and KEEP them just ONCE, instead of gettting rid of them before you can turn the draft on and have them gone already. We could've had a KG, B. Roy, OJ Mayo combo, or the same but with Jefferson instead of KG. Anyways, people have kinda knocked how OJ Mayo died a little in the end, but, thus goes with being on a bad team to, it gets to you, and he still finished second in the ROY balloting. Not bad at all. I want Rubio more than the other guys. But, Curry or Thabeet, however it goes, wouldn't be bad to watch now that we finally have a GM who's willing to make things stick and not just talk about it. Even if we had Jefferson, and say Rubio, and traded for Stoudamire, that would be way worth watching than the crap we had last year. You might be forgetting that McHale is SO soft and so damn dedicated to the numb nuts like Mark (I can't believe he's on a NBA roster for the love of god) Madsen who's scored a total of FIFTEEN (yes 15 POINTS in TWO YEARS) for 5 MILL? I wouldn't pay him with urinated Pepsi in a cup. So, let's hope whatever they do, THEY KEEP for once to see if a "what could've" might be a "yes, IT DID WORK."

Since: Sep 26, 2007
Posted on: June 24, 2009 4:44 pm

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

Normally I'm not a fan of trading draft picks, especially top 5 picks, but I like this trade a lot for the Wizards. The talent available at #5 isn't overwhelming, and they were able to clear some room on their roster. And by adding Miller and Foye (who is still getting better) The Wiz have improved their depth both in the front court and back court. Nice trade.

Since: Nov 23, 2007
Posted on: June 24, 2009 4:30 pm

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

Are you for real...? That was Richard Jefferson and he played for the Bucks.....

Since: Jul 12, 2008
Posted on: June 24, 2009 4:23 pm

T-Wolves are on the clock (UPDATE)

Love is not attainable with thabeets presence. Thabeets will not be as good as love. He will get knocked around game after game. A very poor mans mutumbo. If I were the twolves I wouldnt bother with thabeet. I would move up to 2 and draft rubio. I would try hard not to deal that number 6 in that deal. If I couldnt get away with that-then I would sit back and snag terrance williams, blair, hansbrough type players with tnose mid round picks.

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