More Rumors in this Storyline
Matt Velazquez: It’s official.
Jeff Zillgitt: Shabazz Muhammad headed to the Bucks, per person with direct knowledge. Wizards also had interest.
Darren Wolfson: Word is they’re releasing my guy, Sean Kilpatrick. #FearTheDeer twitter.com/shamscharania/…
Adrian Wojnarowski: Bucks are waiving Sean Kilpatrick to sign Shabazz Muhammad, league sources tell ESPN.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Bucks will waive Sean Kilpatrick before midnight so he’s able to be playoff-eligible if signed elsewhere. twitter.com/wojespn/status…
Michael Scotto: The Athletic Sources: Milwaukee Bucks are the frontrunners to land Shabazz Muhammad, @ Jon Krawczynski and I are told.
Jerry Zgoda: Thibs says Bazz buyout will be finalized shortly. “He wasn’t playing as much as he would have liked and we told him we’d try to do the right thing for him. It’s a good opportunity for him to move on.”
The Minnesota Timberwolves announced the team has waived forward Shabazz Muhammad. With the move, Minnesota’s roster stands at 15 players. Muhammad appeared in 32 games this season for the Wolves, averaging 3.8 points and 1.4 rebounds in 9.4 minutes per game.
Michael Scotto: The Athletic Sources: Shabazz Muhammad and the Minnesota Timberwolves are in buyout negotiations, @ Jon Krawczynski and I are told.
Out of the rotation and clearly out of Minnesota Timberwolves president and coach Tom Thibodeau’s plans, guard Shabazz Muhammad has requested to the franchise that it move or waive him prior to Thursday’s NBA trade deadline, league sources told ESPN. Muhammad’s representatives recently made the request to the Timberwolves front office, league sources said.
The Muhammad situation has been the weirdest part of the team’s depth problems. While Muhammad isn’t exactly a positive impact player, Minnesota could at least rely on him to score inside, run the floor and crash the glass. He could generate big scoring games off the bench from time to time that way. He turned down a four-year, $40 million extension before the 2016-17 season. Sources say Muhammad believed a strong year plus a crazy flow of free-agency money would lead to him commanding as much as $20 million per season in his next deal. But severely misreading the market led to Muhammad deciding between trying to join the Los Angeles Lakers on a one-year deal or coming back to the Wolves. He decided to return to Minnesota for another go.
Jon Krawczynski: Muhammad said he was very close to Lakers. Wanted to win in a place he felt comfortable
Shabazz Muhammad’s signing was confirmed today by the Timberwolves. Muhammad, who spent his four year career in Minnesota but was a free agent, got a one-year deal for the veteran minimum of $1.6 million.
Jon Krawczysnki: Source: Shabazz Muhammad turned down more $ to come back to Wolves for a playoff run. Wolves gave him a trade kicker to finish deal
Shabazz Muhammad: Minny I’m backkkk!!! Let’s make this playoff run!! 😝 #TWolves
Muhammad will sign for the veteran’s minimum of $1.6 million, a league source said. The deal could include a player option for a second year, but that was still an ongoing conversation on Tuesday, league sources said.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Free agent guard Shabazz Muhammad is finalizing a deal to return to Minnesota, league sources tell ESPN.
Darren Wolfson: League buzz: Muhammad has been talking to Landmark Sports about a reunion. LAL still worth watching on him. #Twolves not alone in interest.
Darren Wolfson: FA Marcus Thornton among a few players working out for #Twolves today, I hear. Also: buzz on slightly growing optimism on retaining Shabazz.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are holding out hope they can re-sign free agent Shabazz Muhammad, but with continued talk that he may join the Lakers on a one-year deal, the Wolves have started to work out other players to fill their remaining open roster spot.
The Wolves have pursued free agents Dante Cunningham, Tony Allen and their own Shabazz Muhammad, among others, but haven’t yet reached agreements with anyone.
Jon Krawczynski: Signs point to Shabazz Muhammad signing elsewhere, so Wolves ramping up their search. (@Darren Wolfson had Morrow first).
Eric Pincus: I’m told Shabazz Muhammad considering joining his former agent Rob Pelinka with Lakers, LA considering options as well
They also are among the teams that Muhammad is considering now that he likely will sign a league minimum salary after he turned down tens of millions of dollars from the Wolves last fall.
New Timberwolves’ signing Jamal Crawford made a public plea on Twitter for Muhammad to return. “He’s one of the players we are talking to,” Thibodeau told Dan Barreiro on KFXN-100.3 on Monday. “Bazz has a great relationship with a number of players on the team. I know they would like to have him back. He’s got to make a decision shortly.”
So now it’s mid-August and Muhammad — a 24-year-old who can score and should still be improving — remains a free agent and shows up on a lot of those “best remaining NBA free agent” lists. If he was hoping to cash in this offseason, that prospect seems far less likely by the day. Muhammad might be in a spot soon where he has to take a short-term “prove-it” deal in hopes of improving his leverage the next time he’s a free agent. That makes a tweet last night from another new Wolves signee — guard Jamal Crawford — pretty interesting. In it, he implores Muhammad to “c’mon back home,” presumably meaning back to the Timberwolves.
Darren Wolfson: Further Shabazz M. buzz: he’s looking to switch agents, so his FA plot thickens. Will have more on this week’s ‘Scoop’ podcast. #Twolves
Darren Wolfson: League buzz: #Twolves trying to convince Shabazz Muhammad to come back. They, of course, can only offer the minimum at this time. Hard task. pic.twitter.com/lbsFdEpQ2M
Alex Kennedy: The Hawks, Nets, Bucks, Knicks, Magic and Bulls have each shown some level of interest in unrestricted FA Shabazz Muhammad, sources confirm.
Marc J. Spears: Free agent forward Shabazz Muhammad is receiving interest from the Hawks, Nets, Bucks and Knicks, a source says.
Marc J. Spears: Add Orlando to list as well. twitter.com/marcjspearsesp…
Alex Kennedy: In addition to the Hawks, Nets, Bucks, Knicks and Magic (as @Marc J. Spears said), the Bulls have also shown interest in Shabazz Muhammad.
Chris Haynes: In what was a tough decision, Minnesota pulls QO from Shabazz Muhammad and he’s now an unrestricted free agent, league sources tell ESPN.
Are you serious we just lost Bazz Bc of Gibson? Wow I was happy with the Wolves for almost 2 weeks. Darren Wolfson: Best way to say since deals aren’t official yet: ‘Bazz camp alerting teams he’s now UFA. Two texted to say they’re told he’s UFA. #twolves
Paul Garcia: The Timberwolves have tendered a Qualifying Offer to Shabazz Muhammad making him a Restricted free agent (H/T Real GM).
Shams Charania: Sources: Minnesota guard Shabazz Muhammad has hired agent Rich Paul. Muhammad will be a free agent in July.
In his podcast Thursday, Darren Wolfson of KSTP in Minnesota said the Nets could have interest in Shabazz Muhammad, the 6’6” Timberwolves swingman. Muhammad, 24, is a restricted free agent.
Here’s what Wolfson stated… “So I’m told Tom Thibodeau and Scott Layden both took part in exit interviews with the players. I am told they expressed to Shabazz Muhammad a strong desire to retain him. Now was that lip service? I guess that remains to be seen come July. I am told they told him yes we badly want you back, we really enjoy you as a player. we think you can help us long term. We want you back. I still say keep an eye on the Brooklyn Nets. Now a handful of teams will have cap space but keep an eye on the Brooklyn Nets. A reminder Shabazz Muhammad is a restricted free agent.”
Shabazz Muhammad never thought he was going to be dealt before last week’s NBA trade deadline, but the Timberwolves forward at least felt wanted whenever his name came up. “There’s a lot of teams that have been coming up and have been interested in me,” Muhammad said, “so I know that’s a pretty good thing.” Particularly as he enters restricted free agency this offseason.
“But right now I’m focused on being a Wolf and happy to continue being one,” he said. That’s a similar approach to the one Tom Thibodeau is taking. The Wolves coach and president of basketball operations said a decision on Muhammad is “down the road.” “We’re positioned great in terms of what we have for cap space, where we are with our team,” Thibodeau said. “We have to work like crazy the rest of the way, and we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.”
Dieng signed his new deal Monday, but an 11 p.m. deadline that night came and went without Shabazz Muhammad reaching an extension deal with the team. He will be a restricted free agent next summer. Asked if he is disappointed, Muhammad said, “Not at all. I’m still confident. Coach is still confident in me. In July, my rights are still here. They have the opportunity to sign me. So I love it here and want to be here long-term. We’ll see what goes down.”
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June 19, 2018 | 10:28 pm EDT Update
Slovenian teen star Luka Doncic has elevated to the forefront of the Atlanta Hawks’ internal discussions on the third overall pick in Thursday’s NBA draft, league sources told ESPN. Doncic’s elevation within the Hawks organization reflects a leaguewide belief that Deandre Ayton and Marvin Bagley III could go 1-2 to Phoenix and Sacramento, respectively, to open the draft, league sources said.
Rival teams say that Atlanta general manager Travis Schlenk has been willing to engage in talks about moving out of the third spot and move down to draft later in the first round, league executives said.
According to multiple NBA sources, the Bucks are among the more active teams. They’ll be going into the draft with just one pick – a first-round selection that is the 17th overall – but appear ready to pull the trigger on acquiring a second-round pick via a trade or cash purchase.
Whether the Bucks retain their top pick is now the $64,000 question. Multiple sources said the Bucks are quite open to moving the pick to acquire an established veteran who could immediately contribute next season. “I’ve heard they’ll trade their pick if they can find a veteran wing player,’’ a source said.
June 19, 2018 | 10:22 pm EDT Update
Adrian Wojnarowski: Luka Doncic has moved to forefront of Atlanta’s internal conversation on the third overall pick in Thursday’s NBA Draft, league sources tell ESPN. Michigan State’s Jaren Jackson and Duke’s Marvin Bagley (if Kings pass on Bagley at No. 2) remain in contention for No. 3.