Needy at center, Wolves take a look at 7-footer Whiteside

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: September 7, 2012 - 12:16 AM

The 2010 second-round pick, released by Sacramento in July, worked out at Target Center as team executives looked on.

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The Wolves' Brad Miller, right, drove the lane against Sacramento's Hassan Whiteside. Whiteside, a 2010 second-round pick released by Sacramento in July, worked out at Target Center on Thursday as team executives looked on.

Photo: Steve Yeater, Associated Press file

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The Timberwolves' search for an athletic, shot-blocking center brought free-agent Hassan Whiteside to Target Center on Thursday afternoon for a workout.

Whiteside, a 2010 second-round pick who was released by Sacramento in July, worked out with the Wolves watching for the second time in a week. Last week, they sent a scout to observe him at former NBA coach John Lucas' gym workouts in Houston.

On Thursday, Wolves President of Basketball Operations David Kahn, player personnel director R.J. Adelman and basketball operations director Rob Babcock watched the 7-footer.

Whiteside has played 111 minutes in 19 NBA games the past two seasons. His development has been slowed partly by knee and ankle injuries, partly because he has been a thin prospect who so far hasn't grasped the NBA game.

The Wolves have two roster spots available if they decide to carry the maximum 15 players. But they're also nearly at their salary-cap limit, which means they can only offer a league minimum salary unless they trade a current player(s) and clear space to offer a free agent more than that.

They're still talking with unrestricted free-agent forward Anthony Tolliver about returning to the team, but he is seeking more than the league minimum in discussions that his agent says include four other teams.

Training camp opens Oct. 2 in Mankato. Newly signed Brandon Roy and second-year guard Malcolm Lee worked out at Target Center on Thursday afternoon. Other players are expected to arrive in the coming weeks.

Newcomers Andrei Kirilenko and Alexey Shved will arrive after they participate next week in the NBA's first Basketball Without Borders program to be held in their native Russia. They will be joined in the league's global outreach program by Wolves player development coach David Adelman and others, including Denver's Timofey Mozgov, Brooklyn's MarShon Brooks, San Antonio's Danny Green and former Wolves forward Brian Cardinal.

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