Minnesota Timberwolves shooting guard Jaylen Nowell is entertaining his future options despite being months away from the 2023 NBA offseason, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic “leaning toward leaving the team in the offseason via free agency, sources say. Nowell — a 23-year-old guard who is averaging a career-high 10.9 points in 19.7 minutes per game — will be a sought after unrestricted free agent in July.
Timberwolves guard Jaylen Nowell is leaning toward leaving the team in the offseason via free agency, sources say. Nowell — a 23-year-old guard who is averaging a career-high 10.9 points in 19.7 minutes per game — will be a sought after unrestricted free agent in July.
Nowell, who is earning $1.9 million in the final season of his rookie deal, is currently eligible for a maximum extension of four years and $58 million
Nowell has improved incrementally over his four-year career in the league. In 2021-22, he shot a career-high 39.4% from the 3-point line in 62 games played. Nowell channeled the success of yesteryear with a solid November, before descending to a 27.7% clip from downtown on the season.
Aside from his shortcomings from distance, he has capitalized off of four extra minutes of playing time this year by upping his scoring average (10.9 PPG) to double figures for the first time in his NBA tenure. Nowell has had 12 games with 15 or more points thus far. He’s produced a positive plus/minus and shot 50% or better from the field in nine of those games. He’s also shot 40% or better from 3 in eight of those games, while averaging one steal in that span.
Case in point? When Nowell is on, he is on. Conversely, when he is off, he can be a detriment to the team. Nowell, 23, is a shoot-first player who is anything but passive on offense.
Whispers of Nowell’s impending departure come on the heels of serious trade rumors surrounding starting point guard D’Angelo Russell as the Feb. 9 trade deadline fast approaches.
Monetarily, the Wolves are bound to north of $119.78 million in contracts for the 2023-24 season. With a current salary cap of $123.6 million anticipated to rise by 8.4 percent to roughly $133 million as well as a 7.8 percent spike in tax levels, Minnesota will have to appraise Nowell’s value in accordance with eight-figure salary offers he’ll be fielding in the summer. The font office also has a looming contract extension to either pass or play on with center Naz Reid, who is also slated to become an unrestricted free agent at season’s end.