The Minnesota Timberwolves have experienced many ups and downs in the 34-year history of the organization. There have been times of prosperity, like the Kevin Garnett era where the Wolves made the playoffs eight years in a row and made their only Western Conference Finals appearance.
But there have also been less fruitful times like the early 2010’s, when Minnesota won a combined 32 games in two seasons. Fortunately, the Timberwolves are currently entering into a very promising era with Anthony Edwards at the helm of their ship.
Previously, we explored some of the players that the Timberwolves gave up on too soon over the years. Every team in the NBA has a handful of players they wish they could have back, and Minnesota is no exception.
But on the flip side, there have been several players over the years that the Wolves ultimately held onto for too long. Whether it be an aging star, a one-hit-wonder that lost their luster, or a “right player, wrong time” situation, a few guys have come through Minnesota that the team simply kept around for too long.
These are 9 players the Minnesota Timberwolves held onto for way too long:
1. Anthony Peeler (1998-2003)
An integral part of the successful Timberwolves teams in the late 90s and early 2000s, Anthony Peeler was a role player who got heavy minutes in Minnesota’s backcourt during six of their playoff runs during that time. Operating primarily as a scoring guard, Peeler’s most successful season with the Wolves was arguably his first.
In the 1997-98 season, he played a career-high 33 minutes per game and knocked down a red-hot 45% of his shots from behind the three-point line. But Peeler played just 30 games for the Timberwolves that season, as he arrived in Minnesota after the trade deadline.
From there, his playing time slowly slipped over the next several seasons, and it was clear that his best days were behind him. After the 2002-03 season, Peeler was traded to Milwaukee along with Joe Smith, in the trade that brought the Timberwolves Sam Cassell and Ervin Johnson.
It was the trade that set Minnesota up for their tremendously successful 2003-04 season where they came two games away from reaching the NBA Finals. After that, Peeler lasted just two more years in the league and put up less than five points per game. He was a solid player, but the Wolves ultimately held onto him for too long.