Korn Ferry has already started to identify possible general manager candidates to pair with a new president and coach in Minnesota, including San Antonio Spurs assistant GM Scott Layden and Memphis Grizzlies executive VP of player personnel Ed Stefanski, league sources said. Layden (Utah and New York) and Stefanski (Philadelphia) each have GM experience in the NBA. Milt Newton is the Timberwolves GM now, and it is unclear how – or if – he would continue in any organizational role if Taylor goes through with the hiring of one of his top two candidates.
Thibodeau wants to have final say on player personnel, organizational philosophy and hirings, league sources said, and that’s only available with the Minnesota opening now.
Taylor is expected to be willing to pay a $7 million-a-year package to an elite candidate, comparable to Stan Van Gundy’s deal with Detroit, league sources said.
The growing expectation in coaching circles is that the Wolves will choose either Van Gundy or Thibodeau to take over the team as coach/team president, with the ability to bring in a seasoned front-office executive to assist with day-to-day operations. The Timberwolves fired interim coach Sam Mitchell on April 14. Mitchell, who took over as coach after Flip Saunders died in October, led the team to a 29-53 record.
Jon Krawczynski: To be clear: The search will be for a new president of basketball ops and coach. Could be the same person, could not be.
Jon Krawczynski: Picking up on Glen Taylor's WCCO interview: Wolves owner tells AP he is keeping GM Milt Newton thru FA and draft to fully evaluate him. Taylor says he will make a definitive decision on Newton as GM after draft, FA. Doesn't think he could fully evaluate this season
Darren Wolfson: #Twolves owner Glen Taylor. He's on with friend Chad Hartman now: "Milt Newton is running the Draft and free agency."
Jon Krawczynski: Glen Taylor told Milt Newton and Sam Mitchell at the beginning of the season that he would give both of them the year in these roles and then re-evaluate it at the end of the season. He wants to see how they both respond to the increased responsibility and the moves they make. Newton did play a major role in shaping the vision of the franchise, assembling the roster and evaluating talent while Flip Saunders was still around. So he’s done a lot of the work already. Now it’s his show. And it’s up to him to show Taylor, and the new minority ownership group that is negotiating to buy 30% of the team, that he is the right man for the job going forward for the foreseeable future. That he’s already had a hand in assembling a lot of the young talent on the roster will certainly work in his favor.
July 30, 2021 | 11:47 am EDT Update
Andrew Greif: Clippers president Lawrence Frank, post-draft, acknowledged Kawhi Leonard’s recovery will take “a great deal of time.” The team wants its relationship with the star to also last a very long time: latimes.com/sports/clipper…
Marc Stein: The Jazz will be pressing hard to re-sign Mike Conley, league sources say, and are preparing an offer estimated in the three-year, $75 million range. More coming soon in my This Week In Basketball column you can get directly by signing up here: marcstein.substack.com
Chris Haynes: Free agent point guard Emmanuel Mudiay — the No. 7 pick in the 2015 Draft and only 25 — intends to play Summer League for the Portland Trail Blazers, league sources tell @YahooSports.
Tomer Azarly: “We want them back as Clippers. We respect that they have a choice to make. With Kawhi, we hope to have a very long-term relationship with him… We’d like to bring Reggie, Nico back. We hope Serge opts in. We have other FA as well.” Lawrence Frank on free agency.
July 30, 2021 | 11:19 am EDT Update
Marc Stein: Teams interested in Atlanta restricted free agent John Collins have grown increasingly pessimistic that Collins can be signed away from the Hawks, league sources say. More coming in today’s This Week In Basketball column at marcstein.substack.com
Paul has a $44.2 million player option for 21-22 with the Suns that he could decline to become an outright free agent. Paul could also pick up the option and sign an extension with the Suns. “The feeling within the league now is that Chris Paul is going to stay put in Phoenix,” said Brian Windhorst on The Hoop Collective podcast. “The belief is Chris Paul will not ever be on the open market.”