So we came into the draft with gaping holes at SG and C, and apparently leave the draft with those same deficiencies. But the night was a huge success on several levels.
The most obvious highlight is scoring Derrick Williams, who could well end up the best player in the draft (definitely not a given, but I like his chances). But the real intriguing development was the financial flexibility we gained over the course of the evening. Goodbye Flynn. Goodbye guaranteed money to the #20. Goodbye to all but $800k of Brad Miller (EDIT - never mind, one more year is guaranteed, then comes the $800k buyout. MY POINT STILL STANDS!!). When Eddy Curry's deal expires and free agency finally begins, our team will be in a very interesting position. I've been rolling my eyes at SnP's sermons about eschewing AI, Ellis, and the other big $, big name guards and centers out there. But I'm coming around.
It's useless to tally up our cap figure right now with the CBA an unknown (as well as potential amnesty clauses), but we will almost certainly be one of the few teams in good financial shape. As free agency begins, I am confident we will find ourselves in a buyer's market, hard cap or no. While other teams scramble to cut dead weight, we will be able to make sensible offers to the likes of Affalo, JR Smith, or Barea at SG, or Jordan or Dalembert at C (maybe even Oden, though I'm not wild about that option).
Point is, I'm glad we didn't try to fill every hole on our roster tonight, either by trying to force-fit a whole mess of rookies, or by taking on big salaries. I really do believe that patience is going to pay off. Worst case scenario, we OKC it and see if a core roster of Rubio, Wes, Beasley, Williams, and Love can develop into something solid (or even, gasp, good), with not a crippling salary among the bunch (for at least one more year). If guys like Pek and AR develop into reliable pieces, all the better.
We've been saying for a while that the Wolves have lots of 6th and 7th men, and just need starters to push those guys to the bench - it's not like we're completely talentless. Now Rubio makes Ridnour take a seat (and pushes Flynn out altogether, thank God), and either Williams edges out Beasley or Love edges out Darko. In my mind, if we can snag Affalo to start over Wes, we'll have a legitimate NBA-level starting five (Rubio-Affalo-Beasley-Williams-Love), and a legitimate NBA-level bench (Ridnour-Wes-Webster-Tolliver-AR). Plus Darko and Pek, for whatever they're worth. Had we drafted Burks, no way does he trump Wes, which means we'd just have one more 8th-9th man clogging up our roster.
So what say you all? What one piece should we be chasing once the lockout ends? Or are you drinking the Kahn-Aid and believe this is our nucleus going forward? (skipping a poll here because there's too many possible answers)