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Offseason Primer, Part 2: The Depth Chart

Before we decide what prospects to draft, what free agents to sign and re-sign and who should be traded, looking at how the minutes all shook out last season will probably create more informed rants. At least one would hope.

The above workbook has three sheets. First is a roster listing the size of each player sorted by height (from the Timberwolves website). As you can see, we don't really have any 7-footers; and the tallest guy on the team played 6% of the minutes at center (as you'll see on the second sheet). It's also worth mentioning that Telfair at 6'0" and Smith at 6'8" are pretty generous measurements. Moroni went back-to-back with Craiggers at a Wolves event and Craig really only had 2" at the most on him. Moroni is 6'4". As far as I can tell, everything else looks reasonably accurate.

The second sheet is a mix of how much everyone played (from Basketball Reference) and what portion of time each player played by position ( When considering that we didn't really suffer serious injuries (Foye we expected to be out and have a rusty-looking season, Ratliff has been battling injury for years, and Telfair missed a quarter of the season), it looks like we really spread out the minutes. Only Jefferson, Telfair and Foye averaged more than 30 minutes (Telfair and Foye essentially traded off a good number of minutes given the timing of their aforementioned injuries). Gomes and Jaric were close to 30, but the minutes look pretty well distributed when you take a look at the TOTAL column.

While distributing minutes broadly helps determine what kind of talent you've got across the roster, it's not a sustainable rotation. That's why Antoine Walker, Greg Buckner, Michael Doleac and Mark Madsen sat so much this season; they're known commodities.

The final sheet is your classic depth chart, with a shading pattern for minutes played by position (from the percentages). The first thing that pops up to me is where the free agents show up. Telfair and Gomes played the most points at their positions and three out of the four guys who played signicificant minutes at center are free agents (not to mention that two of them are under 6'10").

With so many free agents, a serious lack of height and few guys that have proven they're worth building around, the moves of this offseason should have a larger-than-normal impact on next year's rotation.