The most concerning revelation for the Timberwolves from the lawsuit minority owner Meyer Orbach filed against Glen Taylor for breach of contract wasn't that Taylor might have violated Orbach's so-called "tag-along" rights to sell his shares of the franchise before Taylor can execute the sale.
Instead it was that Orbach's complaint said there was no stipulation in Taylor's agreement with buyers Alex Rodriguez and Marc Lore to keep the team in Minnesota, after Taylor publicly stated he would include such language to the Star Tribune and other outlets.
Taylor released a statement to try and squash some of that concern Thursday morning.
"As a policy, we do not comment on pending legal matters," Taylor said.
"I stand by my prior statements and commitment to keeping the Timberwolves and Lynx in Minnesota."
While fans are understandably concerned about the potential lack of such a covenant, it's important to remember a few things even if such language existed — and it reduces the need to have that type of language in the deal.
Throughout the last year, legal scholars have told the Star Tribune that including a binding covenant like that in a sale would be tricky to enforce in court.
Courts generally frown upon any agreement that would restrict a business' ability to move if it deemed it essential for the health of the enterprise.
So even if there is language Taylor will include to keep the team here, it can't be overly punitive, or else it would likely get thrown out in a court.
"I'm sure there could be a provision that relates to keeping the team in place," said Eldon Ham, an author and professor of sports law at Chicago-Kent College of Law. "But I don't think it would be able to extend forever."
The only potential penalty known for moving the Wolves would be the $50 million owners would have to pay to the city of Minneapolis for breaking the lease of Target Center, an amount that's a drop in the bucket compared to the $1.5 billion price tag Lore and Rodriguez are paying.
It's also a drop in the bucket for any owner to pay if they have designs on building a new arena locally.
A second factor to consider is the NBA's wishes in all this. The Wolves likely aren't moving if the NBA doesn't want them to do so. Minnesota is not just some frozen outpost in a small media market. It's still a top 15 market, and the league likely isn't going to want to abandon that.
The NBA can also get a lot more money off the expansion for new franchises instead of relocation fees for current ones, and it's important to note that talk of the NBA going into Seattle and Las Vegas has centered on expansion and providing the league with a quick windfall of cash in the billions of dollars that it lost because of the pandemic.
So in the triangle of Taylor, Rodriguez/Lore and the NBA, it would seem moving forward the word and desires of the league and Rodriguez and Lore would matter more than any potential covenant Taylor could bake into the contract.
Ham also said if the NBA doesn't want to move the Wolves and Lore and Rodriguez, it wouldn't make much sense for them to buy the Wolves knowing they would run up against a potentially combative league.
"If they did buy it because they wanted to move, I think they would've felt that out before taking on maybe a recalcitrant NBA and a lawsuit and all the rest," Ham said.
So while fans may have justifiable anxiety over the revelation from the suit, the dynamics surrounding the Wolves' haven't actually changed all that much.