Meet the Timberwolves’s hidden European gem

Matteo Spagnolo, Minnesota Timberwolves (Photo by Roberto Finizio/Getty Images)
Matteo Spagnolo, Minnesota Timberwolves (Photo by Roberto Finizio/Getty Images) /
1 of 3

Would you believe me if I told you that the Minnesota Timberwolves have the rights to an extremely bright prospect who was just leading a subpar team in the playoffs of one of Europe’s most competitive leagues?

Well, meet Matteo Spagnolo, a 20-year-old Italian shooting guard who is currently playing Trento, in his home country, but was selected by the Wolves as the 50th overall pick of the 2022 NBA Draft. Since then, he has just finished his third professional season overseas, and he showed some very positive signs. Let’s get to know him better first.

Playing with NBA-level talent?

In his very first season playing professionally, Matteo was signed with the most recent Euroleague Champions, Real Madrid, and was having a great season. He competed with star players like former Minnesota big Anthony Randolph, who led the team in scoring. He also saw action with European basketball legends like Rudy Fernandez, Sergio Llul, and the defensive monster that is Edy Tavares.  He even had action with other more recent NBA players like Facundo Campazzo and Usman Garuba.

With this stacked team, the young Italian only played in one league game, not having many chances to play more as the season was interrupted due to the pandemic.

However, Spagnolo clearly learned a lot playing with this group of guys, as he was put on loan the following season, he played 25 games for Cremona, in the Italian league, and averaged 12.2 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 2.6 assists per game, with the team only winning 8 games.

light. Must Read. 9 players the Minnesota Timberwolves gave up on too soon

Well, that appears to be quite promising. So now, let’s talk a little bit about what he has been up to a bit more recently: