By Brad Berreman @bradberreman24 on May 22, 2014
Most of the headlines surrounding the Minnesota Timberwolves between now and draft night will surround Kevin Love as well as the search for a new coach. But they have a lottery pick again, No. 13 overall this year, in what is a deep draft class and an immediate difference maker is likely to be added.
Here are five potential options for the Timberwolves when they take their turn at No. 13 on June 26.
Timberwolves' president of basketball operations Flip Saunders is close with Tom Izzo, who of course was Payne's college coach. Payne is experienced (135 college games), along with being a solid rebounder (7.3 per game last season) and he's the Spartans' all-time leader in blocked shots (141). Payne should be able to be an immediate contributor wherever he lands.
Stauskas' three-point proficiency (44.2 percent last season) fits an immediate need for Minnesota. If the athleticism he displayed during drills at the NBA Combine translates to the floor, he could bring more than shooting ability to the table.
Hood was overshadowed by teammate Jabari Parker during his lone season at Duke, but he made 42 percent of his three-pointers last season and would fit the Timberwolves need at small forward if he can ramp up his defensive effort.
LaVine surprisingly declared for the draft after just one season at UCLA where he did not produce at a high level (9.4 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game). But he is someone the Timberwolves reportedly like, and his physical tools and shooting ability (37.5 percent from three-point range last season) would fit nicely alongside Ricky Rubio.
Young has been a personal favorite of mine as a fit for the Timberwolves on the heels of a strong NCAA Tournament run with Kentucky (50 points over the final three games). Mock draft opinions are somewhat wide-ranging on him right now, from No. 10 to the Philadelphia 76ers to No. 15 to the Atlanta Hawks, so I'll split the difference and put him atop this list.
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