Minnesota Timberwolves Roundup: Player reviews, 1999 re-draft

Wally Szczerbiak of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Squire/Allsport
Wally Szczerbiak of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Squire/Allsport /

Time to check in on a few Minnesota Timberwolves players, plus a recent attempt at a 1999 re-draft.

While the NBA readies to announce the season re-start schedule for the games starting in Orlando in about a month, the Minnesota Timberwolves are still in somewhat of an offseason limbo.

As such, there are a few players getting in workouts here and there that we can check in on. Plus, Timberwolves.com is in the middle of releasing their player review series.

And, Bleacher Report put together a re-draft of the 1999 NBA Draft, which was the year of Wally Szczerbiak‘s selection.

Minnesota Timberwolves Roundup: Player reviews, 1999 re-draft

We can always count on KSTP 5/Skor North’s Darren Wolfson to know who is where working out where in the Twin Cities. This week, he brings us current Timberwolf Jake Layman, working out with Minnesota native and former Milwaukee Buck Nate Wolters.

Additionally, former Wolves wing Andrew Wiggins was getting up shots with a local high school player who has a future as a member of the North Carolina Tar Heels.

As mentioned, the good folks at Timberwolves.com are working their way through the Wolves roster with individual player reviews. Check out reviews for both Karl-Anthony Towns and Josh Okogie. (We did ours a few weeks ago, here they are for Towns and Okogie.)

Elsewhere, Bleacher Report’s Grant Hughes conducted a re-draft of the 1999 class.

The Minnesota Timberwolves had two lottery picks in that draft, and picked Wally Szczerbiak at No. 6 and William Avery at No. 14. One of those selections worked out.

In this version of the re-draft, Shawn Marion jumped from No. 9 to first, Manu Ginobili went from No. 57 — the fourth-to-last pick in the whole draft — to No. 2 overall, and Elton Brand, who actually went first overall, fell to No. 3.

With Marion, Ginobili, Brand, Andrei Kirilenko, and Baron Davis off the board, Hughes has Minnesota take Lamar Odom at No. 6. Odom would have been a stellar fit with Kevin Garnett, who was just coming into his prime, and while Szczerbiak’s peak was arguably harder (at least in terms of being a scorer), Odom would have been a more versatile option and a better defender for the turn-of-the-century Wolves.

Other options would have been then-Ron Artest, Richard Hamilton, and Andre Miller. Odom seems to be the best call here, although each of those players would have had added a positive dynamic to the Garnett Wolves.

Wally slid all the way to No. 13, which was a bit surprising. Clearly, Hughes relied heavily on overall win shares in ranking this draft, as Szczerbiak indeed ranks … you guessed it, No. 13 among 1999 draftees in Basketball-Reference’s win shares metric. An easy argument could be made to take Szczerbiak earlier, and mostly due to his peak, which saw him make the All-Star team in 2002.

With Szczerbiak off the board one pick before their second selection, the Wolves take James Posey at No. 14. Posey actually went to Denver at No. 18 back in 1999.

In real life, the Wolves took Avery, who appeared in 142 games over three years with Minnesota, mostly as a third-string point guard. He never played for another NBA franchise.

If nothing else, this exercise makes one understand just how deep the 1999 draft. There may not have been too many true superstars and future Hall-of-Famers at the top of the board, but there is absolutely a ton of depth, illustrated by Szczerbiak falling to No. 13 and names like Odom, Artest, Hamilton, and Miller all being there at No. 6 for the Wolves in this re-draft.

Next. Timberwolves Big Board 1.0. dark

Besides, what’s more fun than a good old-fashioned NBA re-draft?