Reports: Kevin Garnett wants to flush your phone, and buy your NBA team

Reports: Kevin Garnett wants to flush your phone, and buy your NBA team

Despite the team’s lack of on-court success, the Minnesota Timberwolves have enjoyed some significant highlights this season. Rookie Zach LaVine won the Slam Dunk Contest, Andrew Wiggins figures to be the runaway Rookie of the Year winner, and Shabazz Muhammad enjoyed a terrific turnaround campaign after a disappointing rookie season.

Muhammad is out for the season after finger surgery, however, and the Wolves currently sit last in the Western Conference with a miserable 12-42 record. This leaves the return of Kevin Garnett as the lone thing for Wolves fans to cling to as they watch their team miss the postseason for the 11th straight season.

Wolves players? They might have to watch out for the lives of their smartphones, at least according to Timberwolves president and coach Flip Saunders. From the Minnesota Pioneer Press’ Tom Powers:

"As one of our veteran guys told our young guys yesterday, 'Hey, listen, when KG walks in the locker room your phones better be tucked away, because if they're not, they're going to get thrown in the toilet on game night,' " Saunders noted.


"He changed their culture," Saunders said of Garnett's time with the Boston Celtics. "Doc (Rivers) told me that. They had veteran players and everything else, but when he went in the locker room, the music was cut off and everything."

That’s right, kids. Mind your beats. And get your nose out of that blinky-blink thing.

[Follow Dunks Don't Lie on Tumblr: The best slams from all of basketball]

Saunders the president has put together a good group of guys, by all indications, but Saunders the coach could always use some help getting his message across. The Wolves are incredibly young, with LaVine, Wiggins, Glenn Robinson and Anthony Bennett (also out for two weeks due to a leg bruise) all ranking as part of the under-21 club. Bennett in particular could use some sort of guidance in what has been a lost two seasons following his selection as the top overall pick in the 2013 NBA draft.

Wiggins, another top selection that was born some four months before the Timberwolves selected Garnett fifth overall in the 1995 draft, doesn’t appear to be the sort of that needs his phone flushed, but Garnett can help.

The future Hall of Famer combined innate timing and out and out determination and hard work to act as perhaps the most destructive defensive player of the last quarter century, and this clueless bunch of Minnesota pups currently ranks last in the NBA on that end of the ball. Wiggins and LaVine have the natural ability to turn into defensive stoppers, but they’re too young to know what they’re doing at this point.

We’re also too early in this particular game to know what Garnett, Saunders, and the Timberwolves’ front office and ownership group have in store for the next few years. This is the final year of Garnett’s contract, and while most assumed he would retire following this season, Jon Krawczynski of the Associated Press was the first to report that Minnesota was set to offer the legend a two-year extension. From there, the stakes may rise.

Charley Walters at the Pioneer Press reports:

The contract extension Kevin Garnett, 38, will sign with the Timberwolves this summer will be for two years. During that period, Garnett and Wolves president-coach Flip Saunders are expected to try to form a group to buy the team from Glen Taylor.

Garnett has amassed more than $325 million in salaries during 20 seasons in the NBA. Saunders, who turns 60 on Monday, has made an estimated $40 million during 17 seasons as a NBA coach.

Walters went on to say that current Wolves owner Glen Taylor wants no part of selling the team until he sees what the Atlanta Hawks go for in their eventual sale. The Wolves were valued at $625 million recently by Forbes, a massive uptick from last season but also one that could still run a little too conservative as franchise values spiral.

Listing Garnett and Saunders’ career earnings, pre-tax no less, won’t cut it. Those two would have nowhere near the capital needed to buy the team even if it were for sale seven or eight years ago and for around $200 million. They would have to be part of a larger group that would have to include one or two significantly well-heeled partners taking the lead.

If Taylor, who turns 74 in April, decides to move on? He could possibly make a $700 million profit on his initial $88 million investment in the team some 27 years ago. The move would also just about make Flip Saunders President For Life, something many Wolves fans would not be as keen on. Saunders has made some solid enough transactions in his time running the Timberwolves, and he has been a marked improvement over his incompetent predecessor, but he’s running without checks and balances even now and prior to reportedly attempting to take on an even bigger stake in the team’s ownership group.

For now, and before things get hairy, let’s just get used to the idea of seeing Kevin Garnett in what will be his fourth new uniform in eight years. That’s not a lot by NBA standards, but for the guy that routinely passed on asking for a trade from Minnesota during the team’s post-2004 swoon, it’s been a surprising few years for KG.

Garnett debuts on Wednesday against Washington. The story will only get more intriguing from there.

- - - - - - -

Kelly Dwyer

is an editor for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!