LAS VEGAS – The Timberwolves continued to reshape their roster Saturday, trading away veteran forward Chase Budinger to Indiana.
One day after Kevin Garnett agreed to return for two more seasons, the Wolves sent Budinger and his expiring contract’s remaining $5 million for next season to the Pacers and took back another forward in return, three-point shooting and minimally paid Damjan Rudez, according to a person with knowledge of a trade expected to be completed with the NBA on Sunday.
Three years ago, the Wolves traded the 2012 draft’s 18th overall pick to Houston for Budinger, reuniting him with former coach Rick Adelman. But Budinger’s knee injuries and Adelman’s retirement meant the reunion never quite turned out as hoped.
Budinger, 27, signed a three-year, $15 million contract in 2013. He goes to an Indiana team that is remaking its lineup, too.
Meanwhile, the Wolves clear playing time on the wing for their young players and also acquire the 29-year-old Rudez, a 6-10 Croatian who shot 40.6 percent from three-point range in 68 games last season.
Rudez also most naturally plays a position — a “stretch” power forward, although he can play small forward, too — at which the Wolves already have Garnett, Adreian Payne, Anthony Bennett all under contract and Euroleague MVP Nemaja Bjelica expected to sign this week.
Rudez is scheduled to make $1.1 million next season. The Wolves could waive or trade him before trading camp to clear a roster spot.
The Wolves will have 14 players under contract once Bjelica’s deal is finalized. Bjelica is expected to be introduced at a news conference Wednesday.