Kahn says team may have to add one more big, Hoopsworld: Rambis not a big fan of Al trade and more
From Bill Ingram/Hoopsworld: NBA At 2: Kahn's Master Plan
The other key addition for the Timberwolves will be European big man Nikola Pekovic. Together with Beasley, Darko Milicic and Kevin Love, Pekovic is expected to form a formidable front court rotation for the Timberwolves.
"Technically we haven't signed him so I really shouldn't speak about it, but let's pretend for a moment that he's been signed. Nikola is an NBA-ready player from Europe, a big man who plays a true American big man's game. It's very odd, he doesn't play at all like a European center. He likes to play in the post, he likes to establish position and he really knows how to seal people down there and get his shot off. He's a tough guy and we didn't really have enough toughness on our team, we felt, so this is a good addition for us, as well. It did make the idea of trading Al a little more palatable now that you know Beasley is there with Pekovic, Milicic, and Love. We may need to add one more big into the mix."
Not everyone on the team took to the system. Rumors have guard Ramon Sessions on the trade block. Al Jefferson was shipped off to the Utah Jazz.
Rambis noted that he wasn't a big fan of the trade but understood the need from a financial perspective as the team gets rebuilt. He thinks Al will have a big season given that last year he wasn't ever fully in shape after a knee injury.
The Wolves have already picked up Sessions' replacement as Jonny Flynn's backup in veteran Luke Ridnour (a player the Lakers hard targeted for the triangle if Steve Blake wasn't attainable - he's since signed with LA).
Rambis also looks for big things out of Martell Webster, Wesley Johnson and hopes for further development from Wayne Ellington.
From Joel Brigham/Hoopsworld: Wayne Ellington Carving His Niche
"I'm trying to get better at putting the ball on the floor and getting to the basket," Ellington said, adding that he's also put a lot of effort into "creating for my teammates and getting more consistent with my shot."
That shot has been on and off early in these summer games, but he's still got a few months to fine-tune his form and improve upon his 6.6ppg scoring average from last season.
"I had some good games and I had some games when I didn't shoot the ball so well," Ellington admitted. "But I think we're starting to get better as a team. It's really hard to come in and learn the triangle in three days. It's been tough, but we're continuing to get better."
Also on the final day of the NBA Summer League, sources confirmed a Cleveland Plain Dealer report that Minnesota is shopping guard Ramon Sessions (due $3.96 million next season) and forward Kosta Koufos (due $1.3 million), and the Cavaliers have interest in both. Sources said a deal with Cleveland could result in guard Delonte West going to the Timberwolves and then being waived since West's $4.6 million contract has only $500,000 of it guaranteed if he's waived by August 5.