Minnesota Timberwolves: Checking in on Rosas’ one-year mark

Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Ryan Saunders. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Ryan Saunders. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

Minnesota Timberwolves president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas just passed the 365-day mark as Wolves boss, and there’s plenty to talk about.

It seems like only yesterday that Gersson Rosas was tabbed to lead the Minnesota Timberwolves‘ basketball operations department.

But it was actually a full year ago, and it’s been a busy year, to say the least. Thirteen of the Wolves’ 15 roster spots have changed over since his hiring last May, and the makeup of not just the on-court product but the organization as a whole absolutely reflects that vision that Rosas set forth last May.

Kyle Ratke of Timberwolves.com put together a comprehensive look at Rosas’ comments from his introductory press conference and the host of moves that were made over the past 12 months.

From the trade-up on draft night to the aggressive work done in adding plenty of young talent on affordable deals, it was clear early on that Rosas was going to be every bit of the wheeler and dealer that his former boss and mentor Daryl Morey has been with the Houston Rockets.

Over the weekend, Rosas held media availability and spoke with a number of folks who cover the team. The comments that stood out the most were related to the team’s pending restricted free agents, both of whom were acquired prior to the trade deadline.

Rosas also extolled his staff for their assistance in turning the roster over so quickly, as he says that accomplishing such a feet often takes “two to three years”. He admitted that not all the pieces are in place and there is still plenty of work to do.

In loosely related news, Tom Thibodeau is reportedly a top candidate for the New York Knicks head coaching job, and both Brooklyn and Houston are said to have varying levels of interest. This is notable for a couple of reasons.

First, our own Dylan Jackson made his pitch for Mike D’Antoni to coach the Wolves next year after his contract with the Rockets expires. Secondly — and this is why the Thibs news is loosely related to the Rosas notes above — the Marc Berman piece in the New York Post cites an … opinionated “NBA source” who has nothing but terrible things to say about the Wolves and Ryan Saunders, including a veiled shot at Rosas.

"“He saw some young talent that he saw had a poor work ethic. Are you going to be harder on them than the previous administration?’’ the source added. “Look how happy Towns was with Saunders and look how bad they got. If they don’t like his style or methodology, obviously they want a warm and fuzzy family atmosphere like they have now.’’"

Has Saunders had his issues? Absolutely. The team hasn’t been good since he’s been coach. But he also took over a roster in limbo with no front office direction and with none of his chosen assistant coaches last year, and this year has had an almost entirely new team with a host of injuries to key players. Not exactly anything resembling ideal conditions.

The ‘family’ bit is clearly a reference to Rosas, who talks about how important family is constantly. Seems a bit early to trash that approach, does it not?

At any rate, Rosas is doubling down and feels as though he’s on the right track. And think about it this way: the current roster is much younger, has more cap flexibility, more usable draft assets, and twice as many All-Stars as the team he took over a year ago.

Next. Grading Jordan McLaughlin's 2019-20 season. dark

Seems as though things are trending in the right direction, doesn’t it?