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October 7, 2014 Updates
October 6, 2014 Updates

Rubio has been after a five-year contract with the Timberwolves, and though he’d like that deal to be a max, there is no doubt Minnesota won’t go that high. In fact, while it has been reported that the two sides are far apart on a number, you can get a sense of just how far — league sources told Sporting News that the Timberwolves’ best offer thus far has been four years in the range of $48 million. Sporting News

The exact amount Rubio could get with a max deal won’t be known until next year’s salary cap is announced, but as of now, it would shape up to be $85 million over the five years. Obviously, that is a significant difference. The Timberwolves don’t want to give Rubio a five-year deal because they are only allowed to extend one player on the roster for a contract that long — all others must be four-year deals. With good young talent like this year’s top pick, Andrew Wiggins, on hand, general manager Flip Saunders doesn’t want to tie up his five-year extension in Rubio. Sporting News

Ray Richardson: #Twolves coach Flip Saunders expects to play 10 or 11 guys Tuesday at Indiana. No Kevin Martin (groin), who did light work on side Monday. Twitter @twolvesnow

“There’s a misconception nationally, they think we’re really a super, super, super young team,” Saunders said. “But we’ve got veteran guys who have played in the playoffs, who have won championships, have been All-Stars, and everything else. Let people think we’re young. Like I told our players, that’s OK.” Minneapolis Star-Tribune

October 5, 2014 Updates

Q First thing I have to ask: When I do a Google image search for Zach LaVine, the first thing that pops up is a picture of your former UCLA teammate, Kyle Anderson. What’s up with that? Zach LaVine: I noticed that, too. I don’t know what Google’s tripping on. I mean, we’re both a little light-skinned, but I don’t think we look the same. Maybe Google has to get that fixed. Q What’s it like being a teenage millionaire? Zach LaVine: I don’t even think of it like it like that. I just think about how I have the best job in the world. It took a lot of hard work and dedication to get to this point, so I feel like this has all become reality now. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Fesenko says he wants to reclaim an NBA job so he can bring his mother, wife and other relatives to the United States from his hometown in Ukraine, the divided, strife-torn Eastern European country in which Fesenko was born on Christmas Eve 1986 and raised. His hometown of Dnipropetrovsk is far from the disputed portions of Ukraine, a four-hour drive that has brought refugees but no fighting between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists to the industrial central region of the country where his mother and wife live. Fesenko and his wife were married in June. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

He estimated he spends three or four hours a day communicating on Skype with family and friends to keep up to date on what’s happening with them and with his country. “It’s a huge concern for me,” he said. “If the conflict will resolve itself, I’ll be the happiest person in the world.” He was asked if it was unsettling to watch his country being split by the crisis. “It is. I think war is the outdated solution to any conflict,” said Fesenko, a 2007 second-round pick by Philadelphia who was traded to Utah and played four seasons for the Jazz. He hasn’t played regularly in the NBA since 2011. “It’s just ridiculous and stupid and I’m very worried about my mom, my wife, all my friends. Two of my friends already enlisted in the army and I really don’t want that to happen. I’m all up for fighting the good cause, but I just don’t want to lose any of my childhood friends.” Minneapolis Star-Tribune

October 4, 2014 Updates

On Friday, he opened practice by commanding players to throw footballs around rather than basketballs, an exercise that led him to conclude European center Nikola Pekovic is better suited for the position of offensive lineman than quarterback. On Tuesday, he brought a magician — the Amazing Hondo, of course — to camp for some sleight of hand. On Thursday, he had players pull numbers out of a hat to pick sides for a shooting contest after which Kevin Martin and Corey Brewer reportedly walked away with a little extra spending money. “The more jobs Flip has, the better he is,” Martin said with a smile. “I think he likes all those responsibilities.” Minneapolis Star-Tribune

“I’ve definitely got my confidence back,” Budinger said. “I’m finally feeling great and because of that my confidence is back.” That much has been clear this week as Budinger has looked engaged on both ends, and has also been far and away one of the best shooters on the team. “He’s starting to get his legs under him,” Flip Saunders said. “He hasn’t had a training camp in two years, and the last training camp he had was during the lockout so it was only seven days. This is a whole process for him to get where he wants to get.” NBA.com

October 3, 2014 Updates
October 2, 2014 Updates
 

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