Since wrapping up their season in Denver last Wednesday, things have been mostly quiet on the Minnesota Timberwolves front, outside of a few lukewarm Athletic Explosions that took place last week. Most fans, myself included, were starting to get a little antsy, despite reports of a search for a new President of Basketball Operations starting up, that no news had broke about potential interviews and/or candidates. For me personally, I was starting to get overly concerned that Glen Taylor was simply waiting for Chauncey Billups to return his text messages, or for Randy Wittman to decide what color he wanted his office painted.
Well, on Tuesday afternoon, all of that changed:
The Minnesota Timberwolves have been granted permission to meet with Los Angeles Clippers general manager Michael Winger in the franchise’s search for a President of Basketball Operations, league sources told ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) April 16, 2019
Minnesota owner Glen Taylor has targeted a short list of potential candidates to oversee the Timberwolves operations --- with Winger emerging among them, league sources tell ESPN. https://t.co/TE5wWFvRLK— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) April 16, 2019
WHOA! “I’m sorry sir, I don’t see a Michael Winger listed on the Country Club membership roster.”
For those of you unfamiliar with Michael Winger, he served 5 years under Danny Ferry in Cleveland before taking the Assistant GM position in Oklahoma City under Sam Presti. After spending 7 seasons with the Thunder, Winger was elevated yet again, taking over the Los Angeles Clippers GM job after Lawrence Frank was promoted to President.
If you’re scoring at home, that’s basically a decade plus of resume “work experience” with top-notch organizations who have been known to prioritize things like player development, preparation, and long-term relationships (how innovative!) Most recently, Winger did an interview with Business Insider on the misconceptions of NBA free agency (an absolute must-read now for any and all Wolves fans).
It should be noted that Woj went on to state that Winger is among a handful of potential candidates targeted by Glen, so nothing is set in stone when it comes to the lead decision maker for the franchise. Nevertheless, this is a fairly fascinating turn of events for an organization that has spent years (if not decades) recycling the same names and faces over and over again.
UPDATE: It appears Glen may also have his sights set on another highly-respected NBA executive in Gersson Rosas (from the Houston Rockets). Someone grab me a damn hose!