The Minnesota Timberwolves are considering all options with the number one overall pick. This is obviously the common refrain from the team who owns the pick every year, but is especially true for the Timberwolves in 2020.
As you know by now, one day the reporting leads one to believe that the team is trading the pick (to move down or acquire a win-now player), and then the next day we hear they like a certain prospect and plan on making the selection at the top. Just yesterday we heard from fairly credible sources that the team was looking to add an additional lottery pick:
Sources: The Timberwolves are attempting to acquire a second lottery pick. They’ve had talks with the Hawks for #6. A possible deal could include Jarrett Culver and #17.— Kevin O'Connor (@KevinOConnorNBA) November 11, 2020
A number of teams are interested in Atlanta’s #6 pick—the Pelicans and Celtics being among them, sources say.
What do I believe? I believe the the Timberwolves are looking to make the pick, trade the pick, or acquire another lottery pick—whatever Gersson Rosas deems the best way to improve the team. Having a front office that will not hesitate to exhaust every possible avenue to better themselves is refreshing.
The latest scuttlebutt broke Wednesday evening as our friends in the central time zone were getting ready for bed. ESPN reported that potential number one overall pick LaMelo Ball held a private team workout for the Timberwolves — which was his first private workout of draft season.
LaMelo Ball had previously met with Minnesota's head coach, Ryan Saunders, and lead decision maker, Gersson Rosas, but this was his first private workout with a NBA team after conducing several interviews. A source present at the workout said Ball shot the ball well. https://t.co/z6SJOXVG5e— Jonathan Givony (@DraftExpress) November 12, 2020
First of all, Ball’s first private team workout was one week before the draft? Even in the midst of a pandemic, it’s surprising there has not been another. Secondly, it is hard to know exactly what this means for the Timberwolves. The fact the team is working out Ball one week before the draft would indicate an interest in selecting him first overall. Ball playing internationally rather than in the NCAA where team scouts would have easier access to him would likely necessitate a closer look.
However, can we really be sure? Can we look at Rosas’ aggression in the 2019 draft and the rumors the past few weeks and say they’ve decided on anything? In the famous words of Lee Corso — “not so fast my friend.”
Sure, the Timberwolves may want a close-up with Ball if they do make the pick. However, another first-overall contender, Anthony Edwards, also worked out for the team on Wednesday. James Wiseman likely would have done the same but he refused to meet with them (LOL).
Finally, while it’s great that Ball shot well in the workout, that does not mean much until we see it in games. Many poor shooters can make shots in practice or shootaround, but fail to convert in real games (except Adreian Payne — I never saw him shoot well in warmups, in games, or probably even in NBA 2K). Hopefully this is a big sign of things to come for Ball, though.
Hearing how the Timberwolves are considering all options, this doesn’t necessarily mean they have ruled out trading the top pick, either. Who knows, having two of the consensus top-3 players could cause a serious case of FOMO (fear of missing out) in another team and improve their offer.
Regardless of what happens these next few days, we know that whatever the Timberwolves do on draft night will be the best possible move for the franchise. It’s clear from weeks of rumors leading up to the draft that few, if any, stones remain unturned or any possibilities are still unexplored.