Ranking the 15 worst Timberwolves starters of the Kevin Garnett Era

Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports /
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Minnesota Timberwolves Kevin Garnett Joe Smith Timberwolves roster
Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports /

VII: F/C Joe Smith (2002-03)

GS 21 | 20.7 MPG | 7.5 PPG | 0.0 3P% | 5.0 RPG | 0.7 APG | 0.3 SPG | 1.0 BPG

Sometimes even good players have a forgettable season. Such is the case for the versatile forward/center Joe Smith. Smith enjoyed a long 16-season career in the NBA, playing for 12 different NBA franchises over that period (Is that a record?). He played four seasons with the Timberwolves, the longest chapter of his career with any one team.

Smith was effective for the Timberwolves when he first arrived in 1998-99. But by the time he competed in the 2002-03 NBA season, he was significantly less effective.

Like many players on this list, his performance during the 2002-03 NBA season fell well short of his career averages. Perhaps the coup de grâce was the fact that his performance in the 2003 NBA Playoffs was horrific. He would only average 8.0 MPG and 2.8 PPG for the Timberwolves.

He would be traded to the Milwaukee Bucks after this season, where we would rejuvenate his NBA career and continue on to play until 2011.

Smith played hard for the Minnesota Timberwolves in previous seasons. But his performance in 2002-03 was not up to par. Unfortunately, he would be one more player whose shortcomings would contribute to Kevin Garnett’s frustration. But he was not the only player to do so.