Timberwolves free agent focus: Naz Reid

Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Minnesota Timberwolves face a number of players who could test the market this year, but none of the Timberwolves’ free agents have more incentive to do so than backup center Naz Reid. It all starts with money, but it then is wrapped up with more complex issues that go far above and beyond the financial factors. Or . . . do they?

It’s obvious to all that Naz Reid played his heart out in the 2022-23 NBA season. It’s simply a shame that he was injured before the Timberwolves roster competed in the NBA Playoffs against the Denver Nuggets. Had Reid stayed healthy, every team would have tangible concrete evidence of how well he could handle postseason pressure. As of now? It’s all guesswork.

And therein lies the rub. The optimal landing spot for Naz Reid is with a potential NBA Playoff team that needs an economical starting center. Younger teams that are a year or two from postseason potential will not interest Reid. Established NBA Playoff teams with a starting center will not be interested in Naz Reid.

Red hot market, cool concerns


That leaves a number of competitive NBA teams who are willing to take the risk of starting an untested center as they compete in the postseason. And it leaves the Minnesota Timberwolves, the team that is heading back to the NBA Playoffs and who hold Naz Reid’s Bird rights. Now the question is, what does the next chapter hold for Naz Reid?

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Above it all, there is that injury that ended Naz Reid’s season prematurely. While there is little far of that derailing his 2023-24 NBA season, could it pose an impediment to his developing into a true starting center? After all, at no point in Reid’s career did he average more than 19.2 minutes or start in greater than 15 games in a season. Is he truly ready for a larger role?