The Timberwolves’ summer makeover will not include adding Kyrie Irving.
Although the point guard listed the Wolves as one of four teams to which he wanted to be traded in July when he asked out of Cleveland, Irving was dealt to Boston on Tuesday. The Celtics were not on Irving’s list, which also included New York, Miami and San Antonio.
The 25-year-old Irving will go to Boston for point guard Isaiah Thomas, forward Jae Crowder, center Ante Zizic and Brooklyn’s 2018 unprotected first-round round, according to ESPN.
Irving was believed to have put Minnesota on his list because of his friendship with Jimmy Butler, who was acquired by the Wolves from Chicago in June and played with Irving on the 2016 United States Olympic team.
There were reports that Butler and Karl-Anthony Towns were recruiting Irving to come to Minnesota but the assumption was that Cleveland would want Andrew Wiggins in return. The Cavs drafted Wiggins with the first pick in the 2014 draft but dealt him to Minnesota for Kevin Love before his rookie season.
Darren Wolfson, who does The Scoop Podcast for 1500 ESPN and is a sports anchor/reporter for KSTP (Ch. 5), reported that the Wolves never offered Wiggins to the Cavs, although the teams did talk.
The Wolves, meanwhile, are working on a max contract extension with the 22-year-old Wiggins that will pay him $148 million over five years.
That situation took an interesting twist this week when Wiggins severed ties with agent Bill Duffy, according to Wolfson. ESPN reported that the Wolves sent Duffy and Wiggins a contract for the extension, but Wiggins filed paperwork with the National Basketball Players Association to terminate his relationship with Duffy. Wolfson tweeted that Wiggins, who is from Canada, is expected to land with an Canadian agent who is working for a large U.S.-based agency.
Minnesota’s new point guard will be Jeff Teague, who was signed to a three-year, $57 million free-agent deal in July. Teague joined the Wolves after Ricky Rubio was dealt to Utah. The Wolves did not have the ability to offer Teague to the Cavaliers in an Irving deal because NBA rules prohibited the Wolves from trading him until Dec. 15.