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Tuesday Cup of Canis

Comparing front office strategy

Minnesota Timberwolves Introduce New Players - Presser Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images

One of my favorite aspects of the lead up to the NBA Draft every year is watching how different front offices work. This time of year is all about deception and misinformation from teams. I’d be willing to bet roughly 2/3rds of what we hear is garbage coming from inside front offices or from agents with a hidden agenda in mind.

In that sense, it’s been interesting to see how different some of these front offices work. For example, the Charlotte Hornets have basically said nothing at all. It seems like most people around the league expect them to really like James Weisman, which makes sense considering they’re at least somewhat set at the non-center spots in their starting lineup.

The Timberwolves have played the pre-draft media relatively mildly. They’ve made it clear they’d like to, or at least are very open to trading the 1st overall pick. They’ve leaked interest in varying degrees to Obi Toppin, LaMelo Ball, and Anthony Edwards. Outside of that, though, they haven’t really given us a whole lot to work with.

In contrast, the Golden State Warriors are throwing out so much info that it’s impossible to get a read on what they actually want to do. I’m sure Bob Myers would love to add a Bradley Beal-level star to their team using the 2nd overall pick, but that’s just not happening. With that in mind, let’s take a look at who the Warriors have been linked to.

I think Sam Vecenie said it really well, in that the Warriors are absolutely doing this right. There’s no downside to not leaking interest in every lottery-level prospect. Do they probably want to trade out of that spot? Yes, I’m sure they’d prefer to move that for a more established player who can help them win right now, but leaking interest in so many players gives other teams very little idea of what Golden State’s true intentions are with that pick.

This isn’t necessarily a spot to harp on Rosas or the way the Timberwolves front office has operated, it’s just interesting to point out the differences. I do think it’s better to make it unclear what your intentions are for leverage purposes, especially if you’re trying to trade the pick. With that being said, Rosas and his team are so calculated and analytically driven, I’m sure that they already know how they value pretty much every player in-and-around the lottery.

UPDATE: Here’s some leverage for Minnesota!

It’ll be interesting to see on Draft night what was real, and what was all smoke.