The Timberwolves move toward Wednesday’s season opener at Memphis with a 15-man roster that includes four point guards as of Sunday.
It’s an abundance few NBA teams carry and a number that probably makes it about even odds the Wolves trade homegrown Tyus Jones to Cleveland, Philadelphia, New Orleans or another team seeking a backup point guard for another big forward or wing defender by Monday’s deadline to set final rosters.
On Sunday, Wolves president of basketball operations and head coach Tom Thibodeau said there’s room for Jones, Ricky Rubio, rookie Kris Dunn and veteran John Lucas III because he thinks Dunn, Rubio and Lucas all can play alongside another point guard in the backcourt. Lucas primarily has played shooting guard in the preseason.
“I’ve got guys that I think can play multiple positions,” Thibodeau said. “I like being able to push the ball, being able to push the ball is something we want to take advantage of. So we can play two point guards together. I feel good about that, having the ability to break down the defense different ways, to utilize multiple pick-and-rolls. We’ll see how it unfolds.”
Cleveland reportedly has contemplated trading defensive-minded Iman Shumpert and his nearly $10 million salary to lessen its massive luxury-tax penalties. Philadelphia’s current roster is lopsided with frontcourt players and has forwards such as Richaun Holmes, Robert Covington or Jerami Grant it could spare.
The Wolves have enough cap space to absorb a big salary without giving a similar one back in return.
Wiggins returns ready
Andrew Wiggins declared “everything good to go” for Wednesday’s opener after he practiced Sunday. He missed the final two preseason games because of an allergic reaction that swelled his face. He doesn’t know what caused it and will be tested for allergies.
“I’ll figure it out, sooner or later,” he said. “I don’t know what triggered it so I couldn’t tell you, but when it happened, I saw my eyes swell up. They just swelled up quick, quick.”
They said it
• Karl-Anthony Towns on Sunday’s practice: “We looked really good. We’re playing with a lot more passion and fun. The way we’re moving and interacting, you can see it. It’s something to watch. This year, you can see we’re real relaxed. We’re having a lot of fun. We’re ready for the season.”
• Reunited with Thibodeau after playing for him in Chicago, the 33-year-old Lucas on making another NBA team: “I dedicated this whole year to get ready to give it one last push. I knew I wasn’t done with basketball.”
• The Wolves picked up third-year contract options for Towns and Jones and fourth-year options for Wiggins and Zach LaVine, each for the 2017-18 season.
They did not pick up the fourth-year option on Adreian Payne, who will be an unrestricted free agent next summer.