The NBA’s coaching carousel continued on Thursday when the Denver Nuggets chose not to retain reigning Coach of the Year George Karl. The departure of general manager Masai Ujiri may have played a role in the decision not to keep Karl around, and also creates some questions about what Denver’s roster will look like next season. Could the Minnesota Timberwolves show interest in one of the potential free agents currently on the Nuggets’ roster?
Andre Iguodala was traded to the Nuggets in August of 2012 as part of the multi-team deal that involved Dwight Howard, and averaged 13.0 points, 5.4 assists, 5.3 rebounds and 1.7 steals per game in 80 regular season games. He upped his production during Denver’s first round playoff loss to the Golden State Warriors, averaging 18.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 2.0 steals per game in the six contests.
Iguodala is widely expected to opt out of the final year of his contract, slated to pay him over $16 million next season, and attempt to get one more luctrative long-term deal at age 29. Multiple teams are sure to have interest in him if he becomes available, and in my opinion the changes that are going on in Denver makes it more likely he will opt out and test the free agent market.
The Timberwolves need a wing player that is capable defensively, and Iguodala seems to fit that bill better than any other possible free agent option. He is not a prolific perimeter shooter, with a career three-point shooting percentage of 32.9 percent, but his overall skills on the offensive end would make him a nice supplementary piece next to Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio.
Under the assumption he will opt out of his contract, the market for Iguodala’ services is likely to be competitive and he may get a contract in the neighborhood of the six-year, $80 million deal he got from the Philadelphia 76ers in 2008. If that’s what it takes to sign Iguodala, he may simply be too expensive for the Timberwolves to consider if they are serious about re-signing center Nikola Pekovic.
Brad Berreman is a contributing writer at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @bradberreman24.