Brewer is back with Wolves, but 'home' has an unfamiliar look

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 13, 2013 - 11:37 PM

Corey Brewer is back where his NBA career started, but this time he sees a chance for the Timberwolves to win.

hide

Corey Brewer.

Photo: Carlos Gonzalez, Star Tribune

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

 

– Newly signed Corey Brewer is back where his NBA career started, but his return to the Timberwolves is not, as a famous philosopher from another sport once said, déjà vu all over again.

Drafted by the Wolves seventh overall in 2007 and traded away four seasons later, Brewer has come home in a sense a long way from his Tennessee countryside, but so much has changed since he left in February 2011.

The franchise presumably finally has transitioned successfully from its long-ago Kevin Garnett era, and Brewer himself declares himself not the same player Wolves fans once knew.

And here he is, signed to a three-year, $15 million contract for his defensive nature and bubbly energy after two seasons in Denver.

“I never dreamed of this,” Brewer said Saturday, “never thought it’d happen, to be honest.”

He left in 2011 never having proved he had the offensive game to last in the NBA, with a team that drifted rudderless for years after trading Garnett away a month after Brewer arrived in Minnesota.

“That was a tough situation there; rebuilding up from KG was tough and I kind of got caught up in that, got caught in the crossfires,” he said from his Denver home. “As soon as I got drafted, he got traded. They were trying to build stuff, had a different coach every year, and I knew when David Kahn took over, I was out of there.”

The Wolves hired Kahn as president of basketball operations in May 2009, two years after Kevin McHale drafted Brewer, who played for Randy Wittman, McHale and Kurt Rambis in his three-plus seasons with the Wolves before Kahn traded Brewer as part of a big trade that sent Carmelo Anthony from Denver to New York.

Brewer went to New York in the deal and was waived soon after by the Knicks. The Wolves got Anthony Randolph in return.

“If McHale drafted you, you were gone,” Brewer said, “unless your name was Kevin Love.”

Now Brewer is reunited with Love and most probably Nikola Pekovic, the only two players still on the roster from when Brewer was a Wolf. He will play once again with J.J. Barea, with whom he won an NBA title in 2011 with Dallas. Brewer also is good friends with newly signed Kevin Martin because the two have worked out together in Florida the past four summers with personal coach David Thorpe, and now, finally, he’ll get the chance to play with Ricky Rubio, who was drafted in 2009 but never arrived until after Brewer left.

The Mavericks signed Brewer late that 2011 season after New York waived him and he played little the rest of the way, except for an important contribution that helped Dallas win one vital playoff game.

He played two seasons in Denver for George Karl, whose fast-paced system fit Brewer, and he thrived particularly last season, playing a valuable role off the bench for a team that won 57 games before getting upset in the first round by Golden State.

The team’s general manager left for Toronto shortly after the season, and Karl was fired. Brewer searched for a new home as an unrestricted free agent and chose a homecoming for a number of reasons, which included his envisioned role, money and years on his contract and a recruiting phone call from Wolves owner Glen Taylor.

“I feel like I’m a lot better player now, I feel like it’s a good situation to come back to, shown the fans I’ve grown,” he said. “I’m really happy. I love the fans. I love the city. I looked at the situation and everything is going in the right direction. They needed a defensive wing and they needed a guy who can run with Ricky and I rang both those.

“There are a lot of good players there, and there’s a chance to win. The first time, we didn’t have a chance to win. What better than to come back and have a chance to win where I started? If we stay healthy, we’ll be in the playoffs.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Detroit 69 FINAL
Philadelphia 89
Portland 94 FINAL
Cleveland 99
Sacramento 102 FINAL
Toronto 119
Boston 98 FINAL
Minnesota 110
Dallas 94 FINAL
Houston 99
Denver 93 FINAL
New Orleans 85
Brooklyn 102 FINAL
Atlanta 113
Oklahoma City 92 FINAL
New York 100
Charlotte 86 FINAL
San Antonio 95
LA Clippers 94 FINAL
Utah 89
Washington 98 FINAL
Phoenix 106
Toronto 1 FINAL(SO)
New Jersey 2
Pittsburgh 0 FINAL
Washington 4
Chicago 3 FINAL
Los Angeles 4
Temple 86 FINAL
UCF 62
Winthrop 75 FINAL
Coastal Carolina 68
Lafayette 59 FINAL
Colgate 54
Northeastern 60 FINAL
Drexel 65
Wake Forest 76 FINAL
Florida State 82
Rhode Island 64 FINAL
Fordham 63
Delaware 82 FINAL
James Madison 88
South Carolina 58 FINAL
LSU 64
New Hampshire 63 FINAL
Maine 58
Seton Hall 80 FINAL
Marquette 70
Binghamton 68 FINAL
UMBC 56
American Univ 54 FINAL
Navy 64
Elon 65 FINAL
UNC-Wilmington 82
Wright State 76 FINAL
Oakland 84
Minnesota 58 FINAL
Penn State 63
Duquesne 55 FINAL
Richmond 86
SMU 63 FINAL
South Florida 52
Hartford 66 FINAL
Stony Brook 72
Albany 47 FINAL
Vermont 44
Hofstra 79 FINAL
William & Mary 100
UNC-Asheville 74 FINAL
Longwood 64
Radford 84 FINAL
Char Southern 77
Holy Cross 0 Postponed
Loyola-Maryland 0
Duke 73 FINAL
Notre Dame 77
Texas Tech 36 FINAL
Oklahoma 81
Oregon State 55 FINAL
Arizona State 73
Morehead State 82 FINAL
Austin Peay 69
Drake 69 FINAL
Bradley 57
Lehigh 62 FINAL
Bucknell 68
Rice 48 FINAL
Houston 59
Missouri State 57 FINAL
Illinois State 67
Loyola-Chicago 47 FINAL
Wichita State 58
Nebraska Omaha 64 FINAL
South Dakota St 86
Northern Iowa 59 FINAL
Southern Ill 52
Louisville 81 FINAL
Boston College 72
St Johns 74 FINAL
Creighton 77
East Carolina 58 FINAL
Memphis 70
Georgia Tech 70 FINAL
Miami-Florida 50
Miss State 73 FINAL
Ole Miss 79
Clemson 68 FINAL
NC State 57
Indiana 67 FINAL
Purdue 83
Kansas 64 FINAL
TCU 61
Oregon 56 FINAL
Arizona 90
Air Force 66 FINAL
San Jose St 52
Stanford 84 FINAL
Washington 74
Rider 56 FINAL
Siena 49
Dayton 76 FINAL
Richmond 62
Eastern Kentucky 53 FINAL
Jacksonville St 73
Saint Josephs 0 Postponed
Saint Louis 0
UMBC 71 FINAL
Binghamton 55
Akron 60 FINAL
Ohio U 72
Ball State 72 FINAL
Miami-Ohio 55
Memphis 56 FINAL
Cincinnati 44
East Carolina 32 FINAL
(2) Connecticut 87
Murray State 59 FINAL
Eastern Illinois 75
Kent State 63 FINAL
Central Michigan 65
UT Martin 64 FINAL
Tennessee St 58
Eastern Michigan 56 FINAL
Western Mich 83
Bucknell 61 FINAL
Lehigh 76
Indiana 57 FINAL
Michigan State 72
Colgate 56 FINAL
Lafayette 58
Fordham 66 FINAL
Davidson 45
Duquesne 76 FINAL
St Bonaventure 64
George Mason 66 FINAL
VA Commonwealth 70
Detroit 59 FINAL
Youngstown St 58
Army 0 Postponed
Boston U 0
Loyola-Maryland 0 Postponed
Holy Cross 0
SMU 58 FINAL
Tulsa 74
Oklahoma St 54 FINAL
Kansas State 52
West Virginia 57 FINAL
Texas Tech 73
Denver 56 FINAL
South Dakota 82
Northwestern St 46 FINAL
Central Arkansas 63
Austin Peay 67 FINAL
SIU-Edwardsville 87
Kansas 61 FINAL
Iowa State 56
Bowling Green 50 FINAL
Northern Ill 67
Penn State 64 FINAL
Minnesota 75
San Jose St 80 FINAL
Air Force 83
Boise State 82 FINAL
Colorado State 83
Utah State 51 FINAL
Wyoming 86
San Diego State 50 FINAL
Fresno State 57
Nevada 52 FINAL
UNLV 75
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which of these teams is the most frustrating to watch right now?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close