Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations David Kahn met with media members for almost 40 minutes on Wednesday morning and sure seemed to say coach Kurt Rambis will be fired without ever actually saying it.
Kahn said team owner Glen Taylor has assured him that he will be back next season for the final year of his three-year contract.
But Kahn wouldn't address Rambis' future.
"This isn't the right time to make decisions," he said. "We've been in the midst of a season. ... We need time to talk over the next several weeks, months, who knows? This isn't the right time. It's a very emotional time when you're playing. There's no timetable or pressure for us to do something right now."
Kahn said the 17-victory Wolves did not win enough games and did not show enough improvement, particularly defensively, in the season's final two months. They ended the season Wednesday with the league's worst record.
"This won't happen again," Kahn said of a team that finished with a 15-gamet losing streak after dropping Wednesday's season finale 121-102 to Houston at Target Center. "We cannot let this happen again. The status quo is not acceptable. It's just not."
The Wild fired coach Todd Richards on Monday morning less than 14 hours after its season finale. Kahn said he would have no such announcement Thursday.
"I can assure you, of course not," Kahn said.
Is Love in their future?
Kahn said he "absolutely" thinks the team can re-sign Kevin Love to a long-term contract extension next fall.
"I'm not worried about it," he said. "I think Kevin wants to be here.
"We want to have him here. I think he feels, deep down, there are some positive things brewing here and he wants to be a part of it, especially having put in the forced-labor part of it."
On Rubio, or not
Kahn didn't want to talk much about prospect Ricky Rubio and when he'll come to Minnesota.
"We're not going to talk about Ricky today," he said. "And we're not going to talk about Ricky until there's something to talk about."
Players will finish their season exit interviews with Kahn and Rambis on Thursday and then scatter across the country for an offseason that could last well into next fall or winter if there is a labor lockout.
A sampling of where they're headed and what they will do:
Michael Beasley said he will spend some of the summer in Los Angeles for the first time and work out there with teammate Wes Johnson and perhaps Kobe Bryant, with whom Johnson shares an agent.
Darko Milicic and Nikola Pekovic will work out together some in Europe, where assistant coach Bill Laimbeer is scheduled to visit them.
And Love said he will work hard to expand his game with pals Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook in L.A. as well.