Five questions, and an early look at next year's roster
1. Can the Wolves — and will they — re-sign all three of their young stars? The Wolves can sign Andrew Wiggins and Zach LaVine to rich contract extensions starting this summer and Karl-Anthony Towns the next summer. The NBA’s new labor agreement allows the Wolves to sign two players to maximum length and money. Will LaVine seek one and can the Wolves avoid the same situation that splintered Oklahoma City’s Durant-Westbrook-Harden trio once upon a time? Agent Bill Duffy represents both Wiggins and LaVine.
2. Has Ricky Rubio played his last game for the Wolves? Included in trade deadline discussions once again, he shot and scored the ball the season’s last two months like everyone has waited for the last six seasons. Scoring Ricky — enough to keep opposing defenses honest is all the Wolves need — is a player you can build around. Which one does Tom Thibodeau think he has?
3. Will the Wolves trade their draft pick? The last thing the Wolves need is more youth, right? Unless he’s a lottery pick in a draft deemed to be the best in years. For now, the Wolves will draft anywhere from sixth to ninth, but May’s lottery can change all that.
4. Where does Zach LaVine fit? He could return from February’s season-ending knee surgery in time for October’s regular-season opener if the Wolves are lucky but might not be his old self for some time after that. Is he best suited for a scorer’s role as a sixth man, like Seattle pal Jamal Crawford? And how hard a sell would that be?
5. How different will next season’s roster look? There will be many new faces for sure, as many as eight if you count two new roster spots created by the new CBA intended to develop prospects on the Wolves’ new D-League team in Iowa.