The NBA trading deadline came and went Thursday afternoon without the Timberwolves making a deal.
There was talk, certainly. Wolves president of basketball operations and coach Tom Thibodeau said there were plenty of conversations, plenty of proposals, plenty of opportunity.
But nothing, ultimately, made any sense.
“We felt that we’re good where we are,’’ he said.
Talk? Shabazz Muhammad was said to be available. There were reports that the Wolves and New York Knicks had talked about swapping guards, with Ricky Rubio going to New York in exchange for Derrick Rose.
Thibodeau wouldn’t say how close he came to actually making a deal.Only that nothing was worth moving on.
“You look at everything from a broad view,’’ he said. “Does it make sense immediately, short-term, or does it make sense long-term? If it does, you study it and you make a decision. And again, it’s no different than your draft preparation, your free agent preparation. It’s the possibility of improving your team. So something makes sense, you take a look at it. If it doesn’t you continue on. So we’re a young team. We know we have a lot of work to do. We have guys who are growing, moving in the right direction.’’
The Wolves, 3½ games out of a playoff spot in the Western Conference as play is set to resume after the All Star break, will go forward with an unchanged roster. But the team is positioned well going forward, Thibodeau said. Both in terms of where the roster is and the cap space that will be available going into this summer’s free agency.
“We know, because of where we are because of our young players, they’re going to get better,’’ he said. “That’s what we’re concentrating on right now. The guys we do have. And then, at the end of the season, there will be the draft and free agency. We’re positioned well going forward. I like where we are.’’
Thibodeau said he didn't discuss the situation with Rubio or any other players either before the 2 p.m. deadline came or went because "you're expected to be a professional. Everyone has a job to do. Come in and do your job."
Rubio agreed, but....
"I mean, we're professionals, but we're human beings, too," Rubio said after practice Thursday. "We have feelings, but I know this is a business and it has to be like that."
Asked if it's difficult to go back to work now, Rubio said, "No, come here, work hard and play hard."