Quick Intro: Minnesota Timberwolves History
The Minnesota Timberwolves are a team in the National Basketball Association (NBA). They play their games in Minneapolis. The team was part of a four franchise expansion the NBA undertook in 1989, joining the Orlando Magic, Miami Heat and Charlotte Hornets as new teams.
In the early 90’s the Minnesota Timberwolves had back-to-back high profile draft picks with Christian Laettner and Isaiah Rider, but had little success. Prior to the 1995 draft the team hired former Boston Celtics legend Kevin McHale as general manager. McHale’s first move was to select high school superstar Kevin Garnett with the fifth overall pick.
In 1996 the Minnesota Timberwolves added rookie Stephon Marbury and traded for forward Tom Gugliotta. With this nucleus the team made the playoffs for the first time, but were swept by the Houston Rockets in the first round. In 1998 the team signed Garnett to a blockbuster 6-year, $126 million contract. Committing this much money to one player forced them to let Gugliotta go; Marbury soon followed, after demanding to be traded to a team where he would not be outshone.
The Minnesota Timberwolves had success in the early 2000’s but were never able to advance deep into the playoffs. In the 2003-2004 season Minnesota Timberwolves went 58-24, with the best record in the Western Conference. The team advanced to the conference finals before being beaten by the Los Angeles Lakers (the city’s previous NBA team).
In the summer of 2007 the team traded Garnett, the best and most popular player in Minnesota Timberwolves history, getting five players, two first-round picks and money in return. In the aftermath of the trade, the Timberwolves have had very little success and as of 2010 are in rebuilding mode.