MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) - The NBA Draft commences in less than 24 hours and there is much speculation about what the Timberwolves will do with the 20th overall pick.
“I think with our team, we need to look at everything, twenty, we look at it as an opportunity and if we select a player, we think that player can plug in and help us,” said General Manager Scott Layden. “Otherwise, we make a trade to get better.”
General Manager Layden and Head Coach Tom Thibodeau were not committal when asked whether or not the Wolves will hold on to their first round selection. One thing they made clear is, whether it’s through the draft, free agency or trades, they’re after players that will fit Coach Thibodeau’s system.
“There are several things we’d like to address and each year you want to move forward,” said Thibodeau. “We know there’s a great challenge in front of us and obviously the shooting and toughness, the defense and building the depth.”
Minnesota’s offseason included reports of a rift between Thibodeau and Karl Anthony-Towns, but the Wolves head coach says there’s no animosity, just two guys who are passionate about winning.
“I love KAT,” said Thibodeau. “He’s had a terrific start to his career. Obviously, we’re not where we ultimately want to be, but it was a major step forward and you can’t do it individually, it’s got to be the whole group doing it together and for the most part I think we are in a good place.”
The Timberwolves will need Thibodeau and Towns to be on the same page in order to compete in a highly competitive Western Conference and come draft night, their first priority is finding the right pieces to compliment Towns and Jimmy Butler in order to push them back on top.
“Everyone is going to be aggressive in terms of improvement, so we have to understand what the challenge is,” said Thibodeau. “It’s great, I think competition brings out the best out in people, but it’s a great challenge and we’re looking forward to that.”
Minnesota has the 20th and 48th overall picks in Thursday’s draft. Thibodeau and Layden are expected to address the media after they make their final pick.