It’s been 253 long, challenging, frustrating days since the Minnesota Timberwolves last took the court for a meaningful basketball game, but we finally have our first major event of the upcoming season — the 2020 NBA Draft.
Minnesota enters tonight with a treasure chest of draft capital — including picks #1, #17, and #33 (at least as of 12:00 pm PST). The Timberwolves have also been linked to possible trade scenarios with basically every team in the top 10 of the lottery, including the Charlotte Hornets, Chicago Bulls, and Detroit Pistons.
As has been the case all summer/fall/winter long (what month is it?), the staff here at Canis Hoopus will have full and up-to-date coverage of whatever unfolds later this evening, a night that will likely shape the next 5-10 years of this franchise going forward. For now, here’s all the pertinent information you may need as you prepare for the official draft coverage later tonight:
Date: Wednesday, Nov. 18
Location: ESPN HQ
Start time: 7:00 pm CST
TV: ESPN (streaming on WatchESPN)
If you’re looking for good study material leading up to the first pick, please check out our final 2020 Big Board, the Timberwolves draft night playbook, and Dane’s final Big Board podcast.
Mike and I will continue to update this thread throughout the afternoon and evening as picks are made and more information become available. In the mean time, we encourage you to use this open thread as a place to comment on whatever takes place throughout this chaotic Wednesday and provide your own instant analysis. As always, we simply ask that you please be respectful to one another and continue to stay safe and be well.
*Commissioner Silver Voice*— Minnesota Timberwolves (@Timberwolves) November 18, 2020
“With the first overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, the Minnesota Timberwolves select ______________ from _______________.”
And away we go...
The Sixers are trading Al Horford and a first-round and second-round pick to the Thunder for Danny Green, sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 18, 2020
Apparently Daryl Morey has completed all of the modules as part of his new hire orientation, and the dude has not wasted any time reshuffling the Sixers roster.
Could this be the gateway drug to acquiring James Harden? Will Sam Presti flip Al Horford again? How many more future first rounds pick until we are required to start calling it the
NBA OKC Draft? Also...WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR BENJAMIN DAVID SIMMONS?
Warriors star Klay Thompson suffered an apparent lower leg injury today and is undergoing tests to determine severity, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 18, 2020
Well, this really sucks. I don’t know what else to even say. This could turn out to be a minor injury, but Shams wording here isn’t exactly inspiring. What a bummer. As it pertains to the draft, this could potentially open up the board a bit for the Warriors. Taking Anthony Edwards is more palatable if Klay’s injury is serious. Either way, all that really matters is Klay Thompson’s health.
The Kings and Milwaukee Bucks had hoped to bring Bogdanovic the framework of a sign-and-trade to negotiate a Bodanovic contract with Milwaukee on Friday, but he will move into the marketplace to find an offer sheet or seek out other sign-and-trade scenarios, sources said. https://t.co/KDlBiLcaBs— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 19, 2020
Early speculation here was that the hang up in this trade was purely for optic purposes, as Milwaukee would have had to have been guilty of tampering for this have already happened. With this latest update from Woj, that may no longer be the case. It’s possible Bogdanovic still ends up in Milwaukee, but it sure looks a lot less likely now than it did just 15 minutes ago. Wow.
Sources: Minnesota is selecting Anthony Edwards with the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA Draft.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 19, 2020
The Timberwolves have selected a new franchise cornerstone to build around. He’ll slide in at the wing immediately, one would presume. Edwards brings more infusion of offense to the Wolves, who Minnesota will hope can use his 6’5” 225lb frame to bring increased physicality to the team. For more on Edwards, Kyle has us covered here.
Sources: Golden State is selecting James Wiseman with the No. 2 overall pick in the NBA Draft.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 19, 2020
Sources: Charlotte will select LaMelo Ball with the No. 3 overall pick in the NBA Draft.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 19, 2020
This is mostly holding true to projections behind Edwards, with Golden State getting their big man of the future and Charlotte getting their point guard of the future. The Warriors haven’t been shy about their affinity for Wiseman, and he figures to step in immediately to be a rim-runner for Steph Curry. Draymond Green should be a great mentor for him.
In Charlotte, this is a great pick in that they got potentially the best player in the draft at #3 overall. This does create a bit of a logjam at point guard, given that the Hornets have Devonte Graham and Terry Rozier, but having too much talent is a good problem to have.
Chicago Bulls are selecting Patrick Williams with the No. 4 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, league sources tell Yahoo Sports.— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) November 19, 2020
The first surprise of the draft isn’t that big of a surprise at all, given how the past few days have gone. Patrick Williams has been the biggest riser of the pre-draft process. There’s a lot to like here, given Williams size and skill level, but I do wonder about this selection. It always makes me nervous when guys rise a ton during the time period where no games are being played. Nonetheless, Chicago is taking a big swing, and it will be fascinating to see how it plays out.
The Timberwolves are in talks to trade the 17th pick to OKC for Ricky Rubio and picks 25 and 28, sources tell @TheAthleticMIN— Jon Krawczynski (@JonKrawczynski) November 19, 2020
JONNY ATHLETIC BOMB!!!! The Prodigal Son has returned home!!!!
In all seriousness, this is a great deal for the Wolves, in my opinion. The Wolves desperately needed good defenders on the team, and they now have one in Rubio. He’s going to be fun to watch play with D’Angelo Russell and Karl-Anthony Towns, and it will just be great to see him back in town. We’ll have more on this later!
Cleveland is targeting Isaac Okoro with No. 5, source tells ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 19, 2020
This is my favorite player in the draft. Okoro is going to be a menace on defense, and that’s going to be super valuable next to Darius Garland and Collin Sexton. This is my favorite pick of the draft thus far. If Okoro develops a reliable jump shot, he’s a dark horse to be the best player in this class.
As we now close out the top-5, stop back in for big trade, picks, and transactions!
New York has long been excited that Dayton's Obi Toppin might drop to them at No. 8, sources tell ESPN. He's almost there.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 19, 2020
This is just so Knicks. This is perfect. I don’t hate this spot for Toppin, but this just feels very Knicks. The best player in college basketball in 2019-20 now heads to the bright lights of New York City, where he’ll play in Madison Square Garden. I have no idea what to make of the Knicks roster, other than it’s bad, but I’m looking forward to watching Toppin throw down windmills in MSG.
Sources: Boston is selecting Aaron Nesmith with the No. 14 pick in the NBA Draft.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 19, 2020
The Boston Celtics, who are hopeful to make a run at an NBA Championship, added someone they hope will be an immediate contributor in Aaron Nesmith. Nesmith is arguably the best shooter in the class. He shot over 50% from beyond the three-point line in his abbreviated 2019-20 season.
Oklahoma City is targeting Serbia PF Aleksej Pokusevski at No. 17, source tells ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 19, 2020
With Minnesota’s 17th overall pick, Oklahoma City is taking Aleksej Pokusevski, who can be regarded as one of the premier high-risk high-reward players in this draft. I feel confident in saying he would not have been the selection had Minnesota kept the pick. It will be interesting to watch his career develop in comparison to how Rubio helps the Wolves moving forward.
Sources: Philadelphia is selecting Tyrese Maxey with the No. 21 pick in the NBA Draft.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 19, 2020
Tyrese Maxey is a player I really would’ve loved for Minnesota at 17, and I’m pretty surprised he slid to 21. This is a great pickup for Philly, as Maxey is a bulldog defensively who has some upside on offense. Will he be the next great Kentucky guard?
Sources: New York is trading No. 23 Leandro Bolmaro to Minnesota for Nos. 25 and 33.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 19, 2020
So, our Wolves are moving around the board again, this time trading back up a few spots to take Leandro Bolmaro. I’ll be honest, I’m not super familiar with Bolmaro, but the move was not met with positive vibes from our own Jack Borman, so I’ll take that as a bad sign. I suppose we will see how this plays out.
The Timberwolves are targeting Jaden McDaniels at No. 28, source tells ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 19, 2020
I hate to be the grump of the group, but I don’t love this. I might be the only person at Canis who isn’t a fan of Jaden McDaniels, but I was just really unimpressed with his freshman season at Washington. I’ll be happy to be wrong, and there are certainly many who are better at evaluating prospects than I am, but I don’t love this pick with Desmond Bane and Xavier Tillman still on the board.
Sources: Memphis via Boston is selecting Desmond Bane at No. 30 in NBA Draft.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 19, 2020
Kudos to the Grizzlies for making this move. The team that drafted Brandon Clarke in the back end of the first-round last year does it again. I’m pretty bummed that Minnesota passed on Bane, who is an insane shooter and just a good all-around basketball players. I think the funnier thing is there’s a pretty decent chance that this is the best player drafted with one of Boston’s picks tonight, but they’re trading that pick/player away. Boston had the worst night of any team, in my opinion.
With that being the end of the first-round, we’re going to call it on the thread tonight. Thanks to all of you who have been following along! We’re going to have plenty of coverage thorughout the coming days, going in-depth on the new draft picks, the draft process as a whole, Ricky Rubio’s homecoming, and so much more.