Jerry Zgoda: Thibs on the Wolves doing about as well as they could have hoped to do Friday by getting the 20th pick in the June draft. “Yeah, Scott (Layden) was pleased. We’re not thinking about that, we’re thinking about the playoffs.”
At some point, Wolves coach/president of basketball operations Tom Thibodeau, General Manager Scott Layden and, of course, owner Glen Taylor must decide how much they can afford and with whom they can surround three players earning max contracts. “We’ve been planning,” Thibodeau said. “We’re worried about not only now, but we have to be sure we put the best team on the floor we can. That’s a big part of this. The biggest thing is everyone concentrating on us winning. We don’t want to get lost in anything but chasing excellence.”
Jon Krawczynski: Rafer Alston has joined Timberwolves as a scout, league sources tell The Athletic. Skip to My Lou reunites w/Thibs, who coached him in HOU
Chris Dempsey: #NBA scuttle: #Nuggets are expected to soon hire Calvin Booth as assistant general manager.
Chris Dempsey: Booth, a former player, was director of pro personnel for the Minnesota Timberwolves. #Nuggets
Jon Krawczynski: AP Sources: Wolves dir of pro personnel Calvin Booth is leaving to become asst GM of the Denver Nuggets
Jon Krawczynski: Calvin Booth has ties to Denver president Tim Connelly from their days in Washington. Very respected talent evaluator
The latter has since been a consultant for some NBA teams and now has emerged as a serious candidate for the Milwaukee Bucks’ vacant assistant general manager’s position. Newton, who had been Washington’s vice president of player personnel before working in Minnesota, met with Bucks officials earlier this week in Las Vegas. Among the Bucks’ contingent was recently-hired general manager Jon Horst and head coach Jason Kidd. Newton is one of several individuals under consideration for the assistant GM job, which became vacant when the Bucks fired Justin Zanik.
McHale, who served as Minnesota Timberwolves vice president of basketball operations from 1995 to 2008 while also serving as the team’s head coach on two occasions, is known to be on the Timberwolves’ short list as well. The Magic would strongly prefer someone who has previously been a general manager for the president position.
WHEN YOU WENT BACK TO THE TIMBERWOLVES, YOU TALKED ABOUT HAVING A BIGGER ROLE IN THE ORGANIZATION. GETTING A STAKE IN THE TEAM, HAVING A ROLE IN THE FRONT OFFICE, MAYBE EVEN ONE DAY BEING THE MAJORITY OWNER. IS THAT STILL A GOAL OF YOURS? Kevin Garnett: It seemed like it was perfect for how Flip organized and put it together and designed it. Obviously when he left us, Glen saw differently and wanted to go a different way. I’ve always said I wanted to be a part of an organization that is about winning more progressively, in that direction. Minnesota seemed like a perfect fit for that. That has changed. I don’t see myself doing that any time soon, but that still is a goal of mine. I would like to be part of an organization that is part of winning, that I can help the young guys progress. So that’s still a dream but not a priority at this point.
Taylor said that Pekovic, who at one point was one of the more unique and bruising big men in the league, might have played his last game due to long-term injuries. “I don’t think so,” he said when asked if Pekovic would play again. “I mean, that’s for him and his doctors but just listening to what the doctors have told me and what he has said, I’m not expecting it in our plans going ahead. We won’t rely on him.”
The Minnesota Timberwolves begin a new chapter in their franchise history by unveiling a new team logo as part of Fan Appreciation Night at Target Center on Tuesday, April 11. The Wolves will conclude the home portion of their regular season schedule that evening by hosting the Oklahoma City Thunder at 7 p.m. The logo will be unveiled during a special halftime show and all fans in attendance will receive a commemorative t-shirt with the new identity featured.
On Sirius XM Radio, Sam Mitchell said he thinks it could influence Kevin Garnett's decision to retire, but as of the last time they spoke, K.G. remained undecided. "Last time I talked to him, he hadn't made up his mind. I just think the way last year ended with the owner at the very last minute -- and people don't understand, we all felt pretty good about us. Myself, Milt Newton, and the coaching staff, we all felt pretty good about us coming back. We felt like we did a good enough job to at least earn us a couple of years, a year or two, to keep that thing rolling. And I just think KG was just so hurt by the way things happened."
Chris Haynes: Minnesota hires Noah Croom for assistant GM role, sources tell @clevelanddotcom. Former Vancouver Grizz exec leaving Goodwin Sports Mgmt.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Sources: Minnesota hiring Spurs' Brian Pauga as Player Personnel Director. Pauga worked w/ GM Scott Layden w/ Spurs. Well-regarded riser.
John Schuhmann: Tom Thibodeau just future endeavor'd a bunch of people in Minnesota, including GM Milt Newton & super-trainer Arnie Kander. “Effective immediately, the following individuals will be relieved of their respective duties: previous General Manager Milt Newton, Vice President of Basketball Operations Rob Babcock, Vice President of Sports Performance Arnie Kander, assistant coach Sid Lowe, Director of Sports Performance Koichi Sato, Manager of Team Travel/Facilities Coordinator Bill Hohenecker, Head of Video Department and Manager of Basketball Technology Brice Long and Scouts Milton Barnes and Jason Hervey." https://t.co/zyS9eDRyvs
Fired by the Bulls in part because of conflicts with management, Thibodeau negotiated the president of basketball operations title into his Wolves deal. “It wasn’t an absolute must, but I’m glad it has worked out that way,” he said. “I just wanted to make sure I had a voice. The person I’m with, I trust Scott. He has great integrity. He’s a great worker and he has great experience.”
When I talked to Thibodeau on the phone Thursday, he verified that he didn’t talk to the search firm hired by Wolves owner Glen Taylor until Wednesday. … He also said he was not going to hire any assistants until he visits with the current Wolves staff. All of the assistant coaches under him in his last year coaching the Bulls got NBA jobs after Thibodeau was fired. His 2014-2015 staff included Adrian Griffin (now with Orlando), Andy Greer (Toronto), Ed Pinckney (Denver) and Mike Wilhelm, the only assistant Fred Hoiberg, Thibodeau’s successor, kept with the Bulls.
The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced the team has agreed to terms with Tom Thibodeau as President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach, and Scott Layden as General Manager. Per team policy, terms of the agreements were not released.
“Scott Layden brings over 30 years of experience in the NBA to his new role within our organization, including several years in basketball operations leadership positions with Utah, New York and most recently San Antonio. His decades of front office experience will be integral as we head into an extremely exciting time for our organization. In getting to know Scott, he has impressed me with his not only his basketball acumen, but also his character and integrity. Tom and Scott will work in concert together in shaping our roster moving forward. We are confident this partnership gives us the best chance possible of winning an NBA title.”
For now, Spurs assistant general manager Scott Layden is the perfect complement for Thibodeau with the Wolves because he’ll do the job of general manager quietly, efficiently and thoroughly. San Antonio president R.C. Buford loved his meticulousness in the scouting and evaluation of players, and Layden has strong relationships and respect throughout the league for the purpose of making deals. He’s done the GM job twice – with Utah and New York – and learned the Spurs’ way the past four years in San Antonio.
Jeff Zillgitt: Feel for Milt Newton, who has family in the Twin Cities area. Could he end up in DC again if Eversley heads to Philly?
Adrian Wojnarowski: Spurs assistant GM Scott Layden is working on a deal to join Tom Thibodeau as his GM in Minnesota, league sources said.
Jeff Zillgitt: Have been/were discussions to keep Milt as GM. Doesn't look like that will happen. - RT: Jabari Young: Milt Newton is the GM in Minny & should remain the GM. Bring in Scott Layden, but as an assistant. Why does he deserve it? #Timberwolves
Sam Amick: This Thibodeau/Layden combo is great for Minny from front office angle. Too much work for a coach/GM on his own. Should keep Milt Newton too.
Marc Berman: According to Woj, Thibodeau-Scott Layden tandem could happen in Minnesota. Worked together with #Knicks. Layden still has place in Manhattan
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.
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.
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.
August 6, 2021 | 12:37 am EDT Update
Goodwill made mention of the New York Knicks’ calculated moves, in how they coallign with a potential Lillard deal, should his relationship with the Blazer go awry. In providing his own outlook on the situation, Haynes had this to say. “I expect Damian Lillard to go and play for the Portland Trail Blazers. I expect him to try out this roster. I believe he wants to give Chauncey Billups a chance. And I think he’s going to go there, give the roster a shot. And Portland’s probably still not done. You know, I’m hearing Paul Millsap, a guy they’re looking at. I’m hearing Kelly Oubre, who’s still on the market, a guy that they’re looking at, so they’re still not done. But I expect Dame to go out there next season, play, see how things materialize, and go from there.
And then you Damian Lillard, who’s been as public as he’s ever been in stating his dissatisfaction with the way things are going with the team and the roster construction. And then you bring on these players, who I’m not saying, you know, Norman Powell they had to re-sign. Five years, they had to. You couldn’t let him go. But outside of that, there wasn’t much done that I think moves the needle. And you brought up that New York angle, you know, from all accounts of what we’re hearing, definitely, the Knicks have an eye on Damian Lillard, so we’ll see what happens from there.”
August 6, 2021 | 12:27 am EDT Update
Free agent wing Kelly Oubre Jr. and the Charlotte Hornets are finalizing an agreement on a multiyear deal, league sources told Yahoo Sports. The final numbers are still being ironed out, but his annual salary is expected to exceed $12 million, sources said.
NBA Top Shot will sell highlights from the upcoming Summer League basketball competition as non-fungible tokens for the first time, it said on Tuesday. The NFTs will feature outstanding play “moments” from three days of games at the NBA Summer League meet in Las Vegas, those on August 8-10. Fans will be able to pre-order the $5 moments from a kiosk at the venue. “For the first time ever, NBA Top Shot fans will have the ability to purchase a moment in an arena, and receive a moment from a game they saw in-person,” the company said in its statement.
NBA Top Shot is one of the biggest NFT marketplaces, recent data shows. In the month to August 4, it hosted 109,351 traders and carried out 671,149 sales, according to DappRadar. However, those tallies were down month-on-month by 35.15% and 53.39%, respectively.