Flip Saunders leaving all options open for Wolves at No. 9 overall
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Life's guarantees: Death. Taxes. And the Minnesota Timberwolves failing to move up on Draft Lottery night.
The Wolves, as mathematically expected, will pick ninth in the June 27 Draft. They entered Tuesday's lottery with an 81.31% chance of remaining at that slot.
This is the Wolves' 15th straight trip to the Lottery with no luck.
"I feel better than if we got 10," president of basketball operations Flip Saunders said in a conference call Tuesday night.
"This draft is about balance. There isn't that one player who can change your franchise."
When asked about trading up, perhaps for Indiana guard Victor Oladipo, Saunders acknowledged that the chance exists.
"It's always a possibility," he said. "That will play out more when we bring in guys for workouts."
Saunders did verify the obvious; the Wolves' two first-round picks won't be enough to move into the top five. A way more likely scenario, if the Wolves choose, is to package the ninth pick along with a player currently on the roster.
According to Saunders, two players who helped themselves at last week's combine in Chicago are Gophers forward Trevor Mbakwe and Michigan two-guard Tim Hardaway Jr.
The Wolves' top goal this offseason is to acquire three-point shooting. According to Saunders, a heavy emphasis was put on that area at the recent general manager's meetings.
The Wolves also own Memphis' first-round pick (No. 26) and two second-round picks (Nos. 51 and 59).
Before representing the Wolves on stage in New York's Times Square at the Lottery, Kevin Love had lunch for a couple hours with Saunders.
Love plans on working out with point guard Ricky Rubio in late June. Rubio is currently in Spain. Love has full medical clearance after hand and knee surgeries ended his season.