June 21, 2018, 4:15 pm
The Minnesota Timberwolves own the No. 20 overall pick in this evening’s draft, but have explored moving back according to Michael Scotto of the Athletic.
The Athletic Sources: The Minnesota Timberwolves have spoken to teams about moving back in the first round of the draft, I'm told. Ideally, Minnesota would like to shed salary and/or get another draft pick, sources tell colleague @JonKrawczynski.
— Michael Scotto (@MikeAScotto) June 21, 2018
The major salary the Wolves are looking to shed is Gorgui Dieng’s remaining $48 million over three years. There’s also been talk of moving Andrew Wiggins, who’s set to begin a five-year $147 million contract this summer, but the size of his contract would require an complicated trade and it’s been suggested the Wolves may not yet be ready to move on just yet.
The Wolves could also just be looking to acquire another pick, feeling comfortable trading back and still getting one of their top prospects. The Philadelphia 76ers have the No. 26 and No. 38 overall picks and have been rumored to be shopping their later picks for future picks, or perhaps to bolster a trade package for another player. They wouldn’t be interested in taking on extra salary, though.
The Nets are also looking to move up, but after taking on Dwight Howard’s $24 million for next season in exchange for Timofey Mozgov’s $33 million over two years, it looks like they’re trying to clear long-term cap space and would therefore be uninterested in Dieng’s long-term contract.
The NBA Draft takes place at 6:00 pm CT.