Storyline: Andrew Wiggins Extension?

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Max extension for Andrew Wiggins?

Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor reiterated on Friday that the team is working on signing forward Andrew Wiggins to a five-year maximum contract extension, saying that those discussions are in the early stages. “First of all, I think he likes it here, we like him, he can get the very best contract from me, better than he can get from anyone else,” Taylor, who also owns the Star Tribune, said in Mankato. “I don’t think we have any trouble of offering him the max anyway.”

Taylor said that the Wolves’ plans involve extending Wiggins now and Karl-Anthony Towns next year. “We are talking to [Wiggins’] agent right now about extending him out another five years, so we can do that,” Taylor said. “Karl, we won’t do that until next year. Wiggins, we want to sign him to a long-term contract, we want to keep him here, and we’re negotiating with his agent. But we just started that negotiation, and we have quite some time to get that done.”

The 2014 No. 1 pick arrived in Minnesota prior to his rookie season thanks to a summer trade with Cleveland. Kyrie Irving’s reported trade request has sparked speculation that the Timberwolves might trade Wiggins back to the Cavaliers in a deal for the All-Star point guard, but Wiggins refused to take questions on trade scenarios and maintained that he wants to play in Minnesota next season. Wiggins also spoke optimistically of his new pairing with Butler, saying that he felt the two scoring-minded wings would “complement each other’s game and make each other better,” and said that he has been placing special emphasis on his three-point shooting and ball-handling this summer.

Wiggins is eligible to sign one of two five-year maximum “designated” extensions the Wolves are allowed by the league’s new labor agreement for players on their rookie contracts. The Wolves have until October to complete a negotiation that shouldn’t take all that much negotiating if Wiggins accepts a contract that’s expected to approach $150 million. “We’re working on it right now,” Wolves coach/president of basketball operations Tom Thibodeau said Wednesday.

So the Wolves’ primary focus will be on free-agent acquisitions and making decisions on whether to extend third-year players Andrew Wiggins and Zach LaVine. Those two are under contract through the 2018-19 season, but in those seasons they would be restricted free agents, and it might be smarter to try and get extensions done now. “We might have to address Wiggins and Zach during this summer to extend their contracts but we could wait two years and Towns would be one year after that,” Taylor said. “It’s something we can start negotiating with them this year but we don’t have to.”
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