The long-awaited return of Jonny Flynn has had everyone chomping at the bit. The fact that he was statistically that worst starting point guard in the NBA last season is just a mere afterthought given our precarious point guard play this entire season.
Luke Ridnour, Sebastian Telfair and Sundiata Gaines gave it a good run — sorta. But it’s time for Rambis and Kahn to ruffle some feathers and make choices benefiting the team long-term. In other words, someone’s bound to be cut loose. The only question is: Who?
Ridnour is good and fun to watch, but his defense his merely average and his shot selection is questionable at best.
Sebastian Telfair is a firecracker to say the least, but his flaw to overdribble and try and out-flash others on the court has gotten him into a lot of trouble. His days may be numbered could be an understatement.
Telfair could in short order go from starter’s minutes to third man out, which could make him a trade piece if there’s a taker.
Sundiata Gaines was signed just over a month ago but has not had a real chance to prove himself and has clearly been the odd man out during his stint in ‘Sota. He could be cut easily with no remorse, sadly.
So again I ask: Who?
Some might think Ridnour is untouchable given the contract the Wolves extended to him this offseason, but rumblings have it that there is some interest surrounding his name.
* Luke Ridnour, Timberwolves: At $12 million over the next three years, Ridnour won’t break the bank and his play-making abilities could be appealing to a team looking for point-guard depth. The Knicks, underwhelmed by Toney Douglas as Raymond Felton’s backup, are interested.
But is it at all realistic to give up Ridnour given the team’s current state?
“We want him to be more assertive, even though that’s not necessarily in his personality,” Rambis said. “If people aren’t doing the right things, if they’re not in the right place or if they’re not executing the sequences the way they’re supposed to be executed, it’s his job [to get the team in place]. I told the team, in front of everybody, that that’s his job. Listen to him.”
It’s obvious that Rambis is quite fond of his new seasoned veteran point guard, but many fans think otherwise. A fan’s perspective looks like this: Ridnour is a good shooter but there’s a lot of times where he pulls up from mid-range with 18-seconds still left on the shot clock. What’s that all about? Ridnour also gets himself in trouble with the clock running down. A few times this season, Rambis entrusted Ridnour with the ball in crunch time to only let us down by panicking and throwing up some dilly-dally shot that made no sense.
It’s true: Ridnour’s problem comes down to clock management, a vital element in any point guard’s repetoir, given the command they have on the court. I still don’t believe that Ridnour is in danger of moving cities any time soon, but with a strong comeback from Flynn, he may find himself in a predicament that ends with him losing his starting position.
Telfair may be the most logical decision to oust. He’s been inefficient in his statistics and has a tendency to make bone-headed plays, to say the least. Minutes devoted to Telfair have been decreasing the past few games, and the return of Flynn just screams that those minutes won’t go up any time soon. He’s a cheap option as a back-up point guard, sporting only a $2.7 million contract and may very well appeal to the likes of the Knicks, Heat, and Raptors.
As for Gaines, it’s hard to grasp any reason why he should stay or leave. While he hasn’t done anything wrong, he hasn’t gotten any true opportunity to prove himself worthy of a back-up point guard position on this squad. It’s worth noting he is a cheaper option given that he’ll be the third option on this team regardless.
It’s obvious the Wolves have quite the logjam now at point guard. It’s also imminent a move must be made in the near future, once Flynn is fully healthy and playing full games. Things should reveal themselves in the near future but all we can do now is imagine what could happen.