Do you ever wish you were in control of a NBA team? I mean, total and complete control within the grasp of your fingertips to do as you see fit? I wish that upon myself once or twice every day. I often ponder to myself just how exactly the current Front Office of the Minnesota Timberwolves continues to remain in charge of the day to day operations.
College Wolf’s blue print for the future [image2]
Their “blueprint for the future” is total crap, and it’s frustrating for us die-hard fans who can see through the propoganda to view this roster for what it really is. A very poorly constructed and massively overpaid (fifth highest payroll in the league!) team consisting of players who don’t mesh overly well with each other, for the most part. So… what would you do? What changes would you make this off-season? Could you make this team better? I think I could.
If I were the GM of the T-Wolves, here is what I’d do this off-season. First off, my “Reform Program” is operating under the assumption that I have explicit orders from Glen Taylor to KEEP KG. Also, almost all these moves are contingent on each other move happening, so it wouldn’t make sense “roster wise” to do some of them but not the others.
1) Fire Kevin McHale and instill one GM/Head of Operations.
- Being that I am in charge, done and done. In the real world however, someone like Colangelo is what I am thinking of for this role. No more committee bullcrap like they’ve got going on now, where they take input from no less than 7 different people. That is not conducive to installing order and method to the mayhem. You simply can’t try to balance that many different opinions, while still trying to please everyone involved. That’s lunacy.
2) Fire coach (Dim)Wittman.
- We are trying to win now right??? Assuming we are keeping KG then that better damn well be the plan. You can’t do a pseudo rebuild with KG still on this roster. It’s just not logical or feasible. We need to either surround the man with some competent help and a COACH that knows what he’s doing, or completely and totally rebuild around our young core. Assuming we keep KG and go for a run, my short list of coaching candidates includes:
1) Jeff Van Gundy (Ideal choice)
2) Rick Adelman (Already gone)
3) Rick Carlisle (Already gone)
I only add Adelman and Carlisle because they were coaches I wanted this off-season as soon as they became available. As everyone knows, they have already signed with new teams. JVG is still available, and he was my most wanted coach in the first place. He commands the respect of his players, and is someone that would truly stress playing defense, while holding players accountable if they did not. We need to get that veteran and successful coach that will demand respect from his players. (Be it JVG or someone else.) Wittman is NOT the man for the job of leading a team of veterans down the stretch-run. I am sick of this “country club” nonsense. All three of those guys fit the bill and were/are available at some point.
Here is how I had wanted the draft to play ever since before the lottery results were released:
3) Assuming not a top three pick, take Brewer or Hibbert. IF some guys like Horford or Acie Law drop in the draft, explore trade options to move down with teams that have multiple draft picks or picks right outside the lottery (e.g. Washington, Philly, Phoenix.)
- Big success! We got my man Brewer like I’ve wanted all along. Hibbert pulled out from the draft shortly after I made my original post. I would have taken Brewer over Hibbert had both been available anyways. I think Brewer fits our needs and could be a very good all-around player. To me, his game is very similar to that of Josh Howard. Good move here.
4) Explore a Ricky Davis and McCants trade to LAC for Corey Maggette.
- I’ve said ad nauseum that we should go after Maggette. He would be my number one priority in terms of bringing in a player this off-season. He’s got the games of Sam Cassell and Laterell Spreewell mixed in one. I don’t think his attitude is bad (at least not as bad as theirs was) and his coach (Dunleavy) doesn’t like him all that much, which is why he doesn’t play nearly as much as he should have last season. He was easily one of the Clippers best three players. I’ve also read last year that he would relish the chance to play with KG. He is one of the top players in the game at slashing to the hoop and getting to the line. This is fact based on free throws attempted per game last year. (10th overall in the league at FTA per game with 8.4, and 6th overall in the league with Total FTs attempted at 633.) I honestly think the Clippers would do Ricky Davis (expiring contract plus can score) + McCants (young, cheap, and potential) trade for Maggette. I’d give them any combination of the following players to make this trade work salary wise: Craig Smith, McCants, Davis, Hudson, Jaric, Maddog, and Hassell.
I’ve been saying this all off-season:
5) Trade Mike James for a servicable big man. The only realistic options I know of right now would be Adonyl Foyle, Juwan Howard, or Nazr Muhammad.
- I’m like Nostradamous. Out of those three I’m glad we got Howard since he has the most cap friendly deal and provides good veteran leadership. It’s too bad Mike James didn’t pan out for us. However, I can’t say I’m surprised because I was against it from the very beginning. Giving a 31 year old journey man PG the MLE when he was coming off a contract year on one of the worst teams in the league??? Are you kidding me?!?!
6) Use part of the MLE on Matt Carroll (a Freddy Hoiberg clone) or a veteran Point Guard to serve as a mentor for Foye while he learns the nuances of the position. Don’t use the rest unless a vet comes along for cheap.
- Well, that didn’t work too well for us since Carroll already re-signed. He got a little higher deal than I would have wanted to given him. If it really came down to it though and I had a chance, I probably still would have signed him. Since Carroll is gone, I’d ideally use perhaps half of our MLE for a Vet PG to mentor Foye while he is learning. Here are the top 3 realistic options that I’d go after:
Steve Blake (Good floor general and is an underrated shooter)
Chucky Atkins (solid and a leader for our young guys)
Jacque Vaughn (solid vet with championship experience)
I’d really like for us to get Brevin Knight (career 8. ppg, 6.8 apg), but there is about a 0% chance of us signing him for half the MLE. We might not even be able to get him for the full MLE. AND, if we did, would anyone really want to pay a 31 year old PG 6 million a year for 5 years? I wouldn’t do that, it would be Mike James part 2 (to be fair, B. Knight is a better “true” PG than Mike James.) If we could get Hart (young, free agent PG and could develop) from the Clippers for cheap, I wouldn’t be opposed to that either. Otherwise, I don’t see many other potential people that we could realistically get. I would rather not just waste the MLE like in year’s past (James, Jaric essentially, Hudson)
7) Try to trade T-Hud for anything. If unsuccessful, buy him out. Just get his influence away from our young core.
- I will stand by this statment that I would trade Hudson for any single contract in the NBA that is less money and less or equal number of years remaining as his. If not, I just want him gone. Buy him out. I don’t care. We don’t need his influence and problems around our young core. Nothing good will come from having him on our roster next season.
8. Sign a good character veteran with the LLE or bi-annual exception.
- Not sure who is there off the top of my head, but there has got to be a couple of options. This signing would be more of a positive locker room influence more than anything else. I don’t really care if the guy plays all that much or not. The example I am thinking of is someone like an Eric Snow.
9) Since we are keeping KG, explore a “non-KG” trade with for a high risk/high reward player such as AK-47 or Ron Artest.
- Use any remaining assets other than Foye, Brewer, or Maggette. Since we currently owe two first round picks we can’t trade a future first at this moment. I will not factor this into my roster below because this has a very low chance of actually happening. When I say low, what I really mean is zero.
10) Assuming all this goes down, here is the new Wolves roster after my Roster Reform:
- Assume we signed a PG with MLE.
- Assume Maggette traded for Ricky Davis and McCants.
- Move Foye to SG but can still have some PG minutes. Can easily shift to a lineup of PG: Foye, SG: Brewer, SF: Maggette if need be or depending on the matchups.
- Play Brewer big minutes off the bat, unlike in years past with Foye and McCants. He’s ready to play, believe me.
- Do something possible to get a Center that plays defense and rebounds.
COACH: Jeff Van Gundy
PG: Blake or Atkins/Foye
PF: KG/Craig Smith/Richard
C: Hopefully someone new via T-Hud or additional trade/Blount/Juwan Howard
Rest of Bench:
Jaric (if not traded for a legit big)
Maddogg (if not traded for a legit big)
There you have it. That’s what I’d do if I had control starting tomorrow. I think all these moves are viable and possible. I mean, it’s not rocket science. Why can’t our Front Office at least attempt off-season acquisition and moves like this? They all make sense to me (and many others if you would like to check out the comments from this thread in the forums.) That’s what is so frustrating, it’s like our Front Office isn’t even trying to think outside the box… and it’s extremely disappointing.
What do you think? Do I have a “blueprint” for the future? At least for next year?