In talking with beat writers from both Brooklyn and Minnesota Monday, Thaddeus Young said he had told the Timberwolves brass that he wouldn't be back next season, that he would opt out of his contract and seek work elsewhere.
That, as much as Minnesota's desire to bring back Kevin Garnett, motivated coach/president Flip Saunders and GM Mike Newton to do the deal at the deadline.
"At that point in time, with the direction we were going in, that was probably likeliest to happen," said Young after Brooklyn's morning shootaround in Minneapolis. "We went from going from being a team that could have possibly, potentially made the playoffs with everyone being healthy to ... we were trading guys and just getting younger. The direction just changed throughout the course of the season."
Young has indicated he wants to stay with the Nets, telling reporters Saturday in Philadelphia, "It's one of those things where they want me for the future, they want to keep me around. It's a mutual feeling." He pointedly said he won't be a free agent unless he opts out.
Minnesota liked what they had in Young but understand the situation, starting to market Young a couple of weeks before the February 19 deadline.
"We could have easily kept Thad, and he was a good presence in our locker room," Newton said, "but at the same time, from a business standpoint, you don't necessarily want assets to leave without getting something in return."
As for Lionel Hollins, he likes what he has and indicated he should get better. "He’s still not acclimated to everything we do. But basketball is basketball, and he has good instincts. So he’s been able to play well. But he still doesn’t’ know all the calls. He doesn’t know all the defensive schemes yet. So the process is ongoing."
- Brooklyn Nets' Thaddeus Young fondly remembers brief time with Minnesota Timberwolves - Phil Ervin - FOX Sports
- Thad Young talks about his trade to the Nets - Kent Youngblood - Minneapolis Star-Tribune
- The Return of Thad Young - Minnesota Timberwolves