Friday, July 12, 2013

The Minnesota Timberwolves' Off Season - From a 24 Year Season Ticket Holder

               Grade “A” Move:

-          Sign Budinger – good idea.  He may never be a good defensive player, and he may always be hurt, but if he can find a way to play 20 minutes a night for 80 games he is a high-end shooter.  If healthy, he could be a JJ Redick type of player.


Grade “B” moves:

-          Re-sign Pek - $12.5 per, pretty much where I figured he would end up.  You have to keep your starting players, and a good NBA starter draws $10M, so slight overpay, but not awful

-          Get Kevin Martin for about $7M per year – he is a $10M player who is always hurt, so if he plays 70% of the games (about 60) and plays well, he is a good deal.  If he plays less or ceases to play well, he will be a big contract hit.

-          I liked the departure of Greg Stiemsma for $0.


Grade C Move:

Turiaf is a veteran and brings some toughness.  Maybe he can teach Love how to play some interior D?  Despite being roughly Love’s height, Turiaf in one season probably blocked more shots than Love has in his entire career.  10-12 minute a game bench guy and looks to be a guy who might bring toughness and attitude.


Grade D Move:

 Shabazz Muhammed – the Kings got the #1 talent in the draft at #7, the Wolves were sitting at #9, did nothing to move up, and ended up trading down to get a guy who their GM has stated he did not want.  Awesome work guys.


Grade F Moves:

Picking Dieng over Mason Plumlee.  As a Duke guy, I can tell you that I watch a TON of Duke basketball.  Mason Plumlee is one of the few guys I looked at as a Duke player and said, “yep, he will be an NBA player.”  Tremendous athlete, great ball handler, just a huge, huge upside as a player.  His brother Miles was a TERRIBLE player at Duke.  When he was selected in the first round I was astounded – he blows.  Mason, on the other hand, should have been a top 12 pick. 

Giorgi Dieng weighs about 220 pounds despite being almost 24 years old.  He is shorter, slower, weaker, and a lower-skilled basketball player than Mason Plumlee.  How you make that selection is truly baffling.  Do you sit around and say, “We need an skinny shotblocker who is a cipher offensively”?  If so, why not pick Tyrus Thomas up for nothing?

CBrew – I have no interest in reliving the CBrew glory days.  One of the horrible weaknesses of the Wolves as a franchise is that they try so hard to acquire “fan favorites” who are hard working guys who will bust their ass for the fan base.  I do not want “fan favorite” players; I would prefer good players.  I would suggest that the Wolves simply sign “fan favorite” guys like Flynn, Madsen, Brewer, etc. to personal services contracts where they can do appearances and never play or take up a roster spot.  I would HOPE that they would be able to get these guys for under $15M.    Please, please, please stop trying to acquire guys like CBrew.  If you are going to waste $15M, take a flyer on Al Farouq Aminu, who is young and who has at least exhibited some upside potential. 

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