9 Players the Minnesota Timberwolves held onto for way too long

Anthony Peeler, Minnesota Timberwolves (Photo by: Brian Bahr/Getty Images)
Anthony Peeler, Minnesota Timberwolves (Photo by: Brian Bahr/Getty Images) /
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Gorgui Dieng, Minnesota Timberwolves
Gorgui Dieng, Minnesota Timberwolves (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /

6. Gorgui Dieng (2013-2020)

On draft night in 2013, the Timberwolves pulled off something of a heist when they traded the ninth overall pick, Trey Burke, to the Utah Jazz. In exchange, they got back the 14th pick, Shabazz Muhammad, as well as Gorgui Dieng, who the Jazz had taken with the 21st overall selection.

Burke and Muhammad never amounted to much in the NBA, but Gorgui Dieng became a worthwhile piece in Minnesota for the next several years. Turning 24 years old during his rookie year, Dieng had an advantage from day one with his three years of experience playing in college.

He was able to immediately contribute to the Timberwolves as a high-percentage shooter, and he ended up starting in 49 games by his sophomore season. A highly durable player, Dieng played in all 82 games for the Wolves in both 2015-16 and 2016-17.

But in the summer of 2017, Minnesota’s roster underwent a significant overhaul. They traded for Jimmy Butler and Jeff Teague, which forced the Wolves’ rotation to undergo some major changes. As such, Gorgui Dieng’s playing time fell off a cliff.

The Timberwolves should probably have found a new home for Dieng since he was being underutilized and still in his theoretical prime. Instead, they retained him for the next two and a half seasons while his efficiency suffered as a result of his less than ideal situation.