Wolves fill out camp roster, introduce Andrei Kirilenko
- Blog Post by: Jerry Zgoda
- September 28, 2012 - 7:01 PM
The Timberwolves have added free agents Mike Harris, Chris Johnson, Phil Jones, Seth Tarver, Jermaine Taylor and previously signed Will Conroy to their training-camp roster so they have enough bodies for 3 1/2-hour practices daily.
They also on Friday finally, formally introduced Andrei Kirilenko at a Target Center news conference.
He is the last of the contracted Timberwolves to arrive and would have been here for an introduction right after the London Olympics if Vladimir Putin had called him and the other Russian medalists to the Kremlin for a ceremony.
As Kirilenko playfully said by phone from Moscow a few weeks ago, you don't say no when Putin calls.
Here's a link to video from Kirilenko talking about his new team and home after today's news conference.
One other thing of interest today:
* The Jazz today announced that veteran guard Raja Ball won't be with them in training camp, a decision that all but ends his career in Utah.
The 36-year-old defensive specialist clashed with Utah coach Ty Corbin and the two sides have discussed a buyout of the $3.5 million left on the final year of his contract with no agreement yet reached.
Why do I bring this up?
David Kahn has been interested in Bell before and the Wolves have been considering bringing one more wing player into camp that begins Tuesday in Mankato.
Plus, they probably consider themselves still in need of defenders and veterans.
As for the six players they've added to the camp roster...
The Wolves have signed Conroy, a 6-2 point guard who has played part of two NBA seasons with Houston, Memphis and the Clippers, to a minimally, paritally guaranteed contract. He played with Brandon Roy at Washington and is one of Roy's best friends.
Harris is a 6-6 forward who played at Rice and was on the Wolves' Vegas team last summer. He has played 34 career NBA games with Washington and Houston.
It looks like Johnson is their compromise to presumably not signing Hassan Whiteside.
Johnson is a 6-11 center who gives the team a shot-blocking center if Greg Stiemsma's foot problems flare up in camp. He played parts of two NBA seasons with Boston, Portland and New Orleans and played his college ball at LSU. He also was the 2011 D League Defensive Player of the Year.
Jones is a 6-10 forward/center who played overseas two years after playing his college ball at UNC-Charlotte.
Tarver is a 6-5 guard who has played the last two seasons with Idaho in the D League and Taylor is a 6-4 guard who has played part of two seasons with Houston and Sacramento. He started four games for Rick Adelman with the Rockets in 2009-10.
If anybody of that group makes the final roster, it'll probably be either Johnson or Taylor, although each probably is a long shot.
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