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November 16, 2014 Updates

Barea said he left Minnesota with no regrets, and that he understood what the Wolves were trying to do. The Wolves and Barea agreed to a buyout that paid him a portion of the $4.5 million they owed him. Barea turned around and signed a deal with Dallas that paid him the veterans minimum. “I think we finished on good terms,” he said. “We communicated pretty good. They wanted to go another direction. We talked about it and came up with the decision and went from there.” Minneapolis Star-Tribune

“The two offers were (Lakers center) Andrew Bynum, and I was afraid of his knees, and Big Al — and then some draft choices and other throw-ins and stuff like that,” McHale said. “I liked Andrew Bynum as a player. I liked Al, because he was a better scorer, but when you looked at Bynum, I was just so afraid of his knees and all the stuff that goes with that. “I know what people say about me and Danny, but if you look at what the Celtics (offered), Al and the picks, it was the best of the offers that were out there. I was actually surprised in one way, because there weren’t many teams we could deal with.” That factor came into play last year when the Celts traded Paul Pierce and Garnett to Brooklyn in what ended up being a limited market. But in ’07, it caught McHale a bit off-guard. Boston Herald

It’s interesting to note that things might have been different with Love and his desire to stay in Minnesota had not the Wolves dealt away another very good big man in July 2010. McHale was gone before that happened. “The year I was let go, I said to the owner, ‘If you keep Kevin Love and Al (Jefferson) together, you’ll have a really good (No.) 4 and 5,’ ” he said. “And last year I think one was second-team All-Pro (Love) and one was third-team All-Pro (Jefferson), so you could have had two really good building blocks there. “I thought they had a chance, if they kept them together, to be really good. But then they changed management, and Al gets traded for a loaf of bread and a bunch of other stuff (to Utah for Kosta Koufos and two picks), so none of that got to happen. The whole key was building around those two guys. If you have two of the top 15 players in the league, you have a chance to be a pretty good team.” Boston Herald

Saunders, who had come back to run the club and was also taking on coaching duties, was trying to get all he could for Love, whom he eventually dealt to Cleveland in a three-team maneuver that netted top overall draft picks Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett and more. “I just knew that Flip was in a really tough position,” McHale told the Herald. “You’re almost in a no-win position, because you’re going to try to get back assets — you’re trying to get back young players — and then you’re going to try to tell your people to be patient while those young players try to hopefully move up to where you can be competitive again. Boston Herald

November 14, 2014 Updates

''Fortunately for him, he was able to get home and have a chance to talk to his mother before she passed away,'' Saunders said after Friday's shootaround at the Smoothie King Center. ''Our sentiments go out to him and his family.He's part of our family. She was part of our family.It's a sad day for everybody.'' New Orleans Times-Picayune

Garnett told Yahoo Sports he wants to one day own the Timberwolves. "I want to buy the Timberwolves. Put a group together and perhaps some day try to buy the team. That's what I want," Garnett said after a 107-99 loss to the Golden State Warriors on Thursday night. Yahoo! Sports

November 12, 2014 Updates

Timberwolves rookie Zach LaVine, however, had a different thought. Told Bob Beamon set the long jump record in Mexico City, with many saying he was aided by altitude, LaVine wondered if he might benefit. “If that’s the case, we might be able to jump higher,” LaVine said. “I might have to do some dunks in warmups, see how I feel.” Houston Chronicle

November 11, 2014 Updates

The Minnesota Timberwolves will make their second attempt to play a regular-season game in Mexico City, after last year's game with the San Antonio Spurs was canceled because of smoke inside Mexico City Arena. The Timberwolves will face the Houston Rockets on Wednesday in the same venue where a short circuit in a generator room sent fumes inside the building during warmups. NBA Mexico director Raul Zarraga says "stricter measures" have been taken to "prevent this from happening again." ESPN.com

November 10, 2014 Updates

The clock was ticking down on Halloween night, and millions of dollars hung in the balance for Ricky Rubio and several other players who entered the NBA in 2011 and were up for extensions of their rookie contracts. To make matters worse, they were faced with weighty decisions about their futures while regular season games were being played, leading many involved in the process to express concern about the timing of the deadline. These are talks that could make players free agents after the season if not nailed down, and though they deserve the full attention of everyone involved, the Oct. 31 deadline means many negotiations drag into the regular season. Many hope the date will be moved up. "It becomes very difficult," Minnesota Timberwolves president and coach Flip Saunders said. "The league encourages you, if you got a game that night, you might want to get that thing done. It would be beneficial to have the date moved before the start of the regular season." Boston Herald

ubio didn't have to play on Oct. 31, the day he signed a four-year, $55 million extension. But he did play twice earlier in the week while the talks were ongoing, and it was a stomach-churning experience. "There was a lot of stuff going on off the court I didn't like," said Rubio, now sidelined indefinitely with a severely sprained ankle. "At the end of the day, it's business and you have to have that part." Boston Herald

A lot has changed for Bennett. He was traded to Minnesota, part of the package that netted Kevin Love for Cleveland. He dropped 20 pounds, thanks to a more active offseason and a three-week, end-of-summer boot camp with trainer Frank Matrisciano. He had surgery to remove his tonsils and adenoids, which has helped him sleep. He had laser eye surgery. Bennett has never worn contacts. Can’t put them in his eyes. How bad was his vision before? “You see that white board?” Bennett said recently, pointing to a board no more than 10 feet away. “Last year, I couldn’t read the writing on it.” “Anything far, I couldn’t really see,” Bennett said. “I couldn’t see the people in the stands. Now I can see the scoreboard. I can see what plays coach wants to run.” Sports Illustrated

Saunders has gone out of his way to make Bennett aware that he believes in him. “I believe the biggest thing is we showed that we really care about him,” Saunders said. “We work with him on a daily basis, whether it is in the film room or on the floor or just talking to him. There is a saying coaches use: A player is only as good as his coach thinks he is. If he feels the coach has confidence in him, he is probably going to play at a higher level. We have a lot of confidence in him.” Sports Illustrated

THE TOP 50 PLAYERS IN TIMBERWOLVES HISTORY

Kevin Garnett remains unquestionably the No. 1 player in franchise history. The other Kevin can no longer threaten that position.

   

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