Wolves: Mitchell out, looking for new coach, president of basketball ops

Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor apparently has had enough of trying to do the job himself and has hired an outside firm to help him select his next team president and head coach. Sources tell FOX 9 Sports that the Wolves will employ the services of Korn Ferry, a global organizational advisory firm to fill the positions. 

Interim Coach Sam Mitchell and Interim General Manager Milt Newton will be relieved of their duties and may be considered for their old jobs, but the odds are stacked against them. 

The expectations are that Taylor is ready to spend some serious money to hire one of the biggest names in the NBA coaching and end his team’s 12-year playoff drought. There is plenty to lure in possible candidates with the tremendous young talent the Wolves possess, along with a renovation of Target Center underway and the brand new practice facility.

Timberwolves full announcement

The Minnesota Timberwolves have announced Sam Mitchell has been relieved of his interim head coaching duties, effective immediately, and the team will initiate a search for both a new head coach and head of basketball operations. Due to the sudden onset of Flip Saunders' illness leading to his untimely death, the team was unable to conduct a search for these two critical positions in the timetable leading up to the start of the 2015-16 season. In these unusual circumstances, Sam Mitchell was named to interim head coach and Milt Newton was asked to act as the head of basketball operations, filling the void left by Saunders.

With the conclusion of the season a comprehensive search can take place to fill both vacancies. To manage the search process, the team has retained the services of Korn Ferry, whose sports practice includes extensive experience in coaching, executive and team personnel searches. The search will focus exclusively on candidates outside the current organization.

“The future of the Minnesota Timberwolves has never been brighter,” said Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor. “It’s important that we find the best leaders to shape our talented team and help them realize their full potential. We owe it to our fans, our community and to our players to ensure our team has the best chance possible of winning an NBA title.”

“I would like to thank both Sam and Milt for a good job under very difficult circumstances in guiding our team this season,” said Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor. “They were put in a historically challenging position as no team in NBA history has had an active head coach pass away. Both men provided our team with continuity and direction for the 2015-16 season. We will always be grateful to Sam for his contributions this season and wish he and his family the best in the future.”

The team’s search for these two basketball leadership positions will be wide-ranging and extensive. Milt Newton will continue to serve as General Manager as the new leadership team is assembled. No timeline has been set and no further updates will be provided until the conclusion of the searches.