Two NBA officials with knowledge of the deal confirmed that the trade had been agreed upon Tuesday night. They spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal had not been completed.
The deal would give Minnesota the fifth and sixth overall selections in Thursday’s NBA draft, as well as forwards Etan Thomas, Darius Songaila and Oleksiy Pecherov.
The trade hasn’t been consummated yet because of a clerical point that Etan Thomas needs to handle, a source told Katz. Thomas has to come to the Wizards’ offices Wednesday to sign an agreement that he won’t opt out of his deal on July 1 and become a free agent. By agreeing to the trade, Thomas would receive $1.2 million. Thomas is expected to sign the note, but it is a procedural matter that must be done before a conference call with all parties can be held.
Meanwhile, Minnesota owner Glen Taylor, who is the chairman of the board of governors, was expected to meet with general manager David Kahn Tuesday night to go over the trade but wasn’t expected to balk at the move.
Kahn made a bold and justifiable move on Tuesday night (shockingly, Kevin Love didn’t break the news through a tweet): While understanding that Randy Foye can still be a capable sixth man, he’s due a contract extension in the near future. Paying an undersized shooting guard, who’s better suited to come off the bench, decent money would be a mistake. 29-year-old forward Mike Miller is a free agent after the ’09-’10 season. Much like with Foye, paying him good dough, on a team aiming to be good in two years minimum, made little sense. Also, we are talking about a team that won just 24 games last season. Blowing up that collection of mediocrity was necessary.
The trade was awaiting final approval by both sides. If consummated, the deal would enable new Timberwolves general manager David Kahn to make any number of moves leading up to the draft, whether he decides to keep the picks or package some or all of them to move up to No. 2 in an exchange with Memphis that could bring Ricky Rubio to Minnesota.
It is clear from the trade that Kahn intends to rebuild his backcourt after offering his two most talented guards to Washington — and by no coincidence, this happens to be a draft heavy with guards, and point guards in particular.
With Foye on his way to D.C., it’s safe to assume Minnesota will likely draft a point guard with at least one of the team’s two lottery picks.
Multiple sources have indicated that Wolves are very high on combo guard Tyreke Evans. However, there have been questions as to whether or not Evans will be a true point guard in the NBA. With the fifth pick now in their back pocket, the Wolves could now potentially draft Evans along with another “true” point guard should they so desire.
The Wolves could also package the fifth and sixth picks in an attempt to try and move up in the draft, possibly as high as #2 if the Grizzlies are willing to pull the trigger. However, that seems unlikely given the fact that Ricky Rubio, the player the Wolves would likely select if they agreed to such a deal, isn’t worth the risk of trading two high lottery picks.
Having already hired two former Timberwolves head coaches in Flip Saunders and Randy Wittman, a former Timberwolves assistant in Don Zierden and a former Timberwolves player in Sam Cassell, the Wizards continue to raid the Land of 10,000 Lakes.
According to a league source, the Wizards tried to pry the No. 18 pick from Minnesota but the Timberwolves balked.