On the rumored deal with the Wizards

On the rumored deal with the Wizards

TWolves Blog

On the rumored deal with the Wizards

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The Timberwolves agreed to trade guards Randy Foye and Mike Miller to the Washington Wizards for the fifth overall draft pick and three players, leaving Minnesota with four first-round choices and plenty of ammunition to do even more wheeling and dealing.

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.

A source close to Minnesota told ESPN.com’s Andy Katz that the Timberwolves aren’t done. The Wolves now own Nos. 5, 6, 18 and 28 in the first round. A source said that the Timberwolves won’t package Nos. 5 and 6 for No. 2, but they could offer the fifth and 18th picks for the second. The key for Minnesota, according to the source, is that it wants to have two lottery selections, whether that’s Nos. 2 and 6 or 5 and 6. The source said Minnesota is expecting to have a “very busy Wednesday.”

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.

The trade is probably good news for the chances of Rodney Carney re-upping. And, unless Rubio is the ultimate prize–and you wouldn’t hear any flak from me if that’s the endgame–it means Stephen Curry has a much better chance of becoming a Timberwolf in about 48 hours. Because from what I have read and youtubed (as I frequently have stated, almost all of my college smarts is received wisdom), despite a wealth of other beguiling skills, neither Tyreke Evans nor James Harden is particularly adept at perimeter shooting. Certainly we know that after the Clips take Blake Griffin first overall, three players go before the Wolves pick twice, and that two of them are likely to be Rubio and Thabeet. That means there will be  will be two “quality” backcourt players available at #5 and #6, most likely from among Harden, Evans and Curry, and the glut of point guards after Rubio, including Flynn, Jennings, Holiday and Lawson. Either Rubio or two of those other names will likely be Wolves in the very near future.

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.

This leaves the Wolves with both the fifth and sixth picks in the draft, setting them up to make a huge splash on Thursday. That’s right in line with what new general manager David Kahn has hinted he’s been trying to accomplish. The question from there is whether he’s done wheeling and dealing, or if the 5 and 6 are just a setup for something else. The Sports Illustrated report indicates they’re planning on keeping both picks, but with under 48 hours to go, it’s possible Minnesota may have something else planned. And if not, a foundation is being built in Minnesota that no longer rests on a single ticket, but a total package.
From Travis Heath/Hoopsworld:
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.

From Michael Lee/Washington Post:
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.
Minnesota, meanwhile, desperately wanted to acquire a top-five pick to package with the No. 6 pick it already holds and possibly move up as high as second overall in the draft. Apparently, the fifth pick was worth Thomas’ salary and Songaila ($4.5 million) and Pecherov ($1.55 million).

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