Wolves executive has reached out to Andrei Kirilenko, source says
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Kevin Love and Alexey Shved might not be the only reasons for Minnesota Timberwolves fans to pay close attention to Olympics basketball over the next few weeks.
The gift that keeps on giving, Wolves president of basketball operations David Kahn, remains as active as any executive in the league. This offseason would be boring without him.
A league source said on Tuesday that Kahn has reached out to the agent for free-agent forward Andrei Kirilenko, who played 10 seasons for the Utah Jazz before returning to his native Russia to play last season with CSKA Moscow.
It's another sign the Wolves have moved on to one of many backup plans. That's because they had no interest in Kirilenko during the first few days of free agency. The Wolves have lots of money to play with, so they are incredibly popular with every agent.
The Wolves could have even more flexibility if they complete the three-team trade with Phoenix and New Orleans reported on Tuesday by Yahoo! Sports.
According to the report, the Wolves are close to a deal that would ship Wesley Johnson's $4.2 million contract for 2012-13 and a future first-round pick, which would be expected to have some protection, to the Phoenix Suns in return for salary-cap relief and future draft picks. Center Robin Lopez would go to the Hornets.
Kirilenko, 31, played with Shved on CSKA Moscow and will play with him again on Russia's Olympics team at the London Games.
In his 10-year NBA career, Kirilenko averaged 12.4 points and 5.6 rebounds per game and shot a combined 47% from the field.