With the ninth overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Minnesota Timberwolves may find themselves in a tough situation. Their biggest need is a shooting guard at the moment, but the elite two guards will be gone by then. Unless they trade up, they may end up addressing a similar position on the wing.
Andrei Kirilenko, Minnesota’s starting small forward, is coming up on an option and whether or not he comes back I believe the Wolves still need someone to back him up. A great fit here would be Croatian forward Dario Saric.
Saric is 6’10’’ and can stretch the floor nicely. He has a great outside shot which would be welcomed by the Wolves who shot a terrible percentage (35) from beyond the arc last year. With point guard Ricky Rubio giving him open looks, Saric could take advantage by knocking them down – again, another weak point from Minnesota.
Last season, the Wolves were not only decimated by injuries, but the guys that were healthy couldn’t even hit a decent percentage of open looks. It seemed that game after game Rubio would consistently find his teammates for open shots and they just weren’t falling. Saric would help in this area.
Having the ability to slash to the hoop and finish in traffic, Saric would give the Wolves a great offensive threat as well. They lack a guy young and athletic enough to finish at the bucket when on a cut or an isolation.
Saric is also a good defender at only 19 years old, with tons of room to continue growing there. He understands is size is a great asset when defending guys at his position and makes it tough on them scoring-wise.
At number nine, the Wolves will likely see guys like Saric, Cody Zeller or Kentavious Caldwell-Pope as the most suited for them. I think they would be wise to go with the young prospect from Croatia and let him learn a little more from Kirilenko if he returns. Saric has a high ceiling, could benefit the Wolves in many aspects of the game and would be well worth the pick.