Timberwolves and free agent C.J. Miles have mutual interest


The Minnesota Timberwolves and free agent C.J. Miles have mutual interest in completing a deal that brings Miles to Minnesota.

C.J. Miles is the latest player in Minnesota Timberwolves free agency rumors and he fits the mold of a 3-and-D winger that the team desperately needs. Darren Wolfson of KSTP reports the Wolves would need the Indiana Pacers’ help to sign Miles by pulling off a sign-and-trade that gives Minnesota the necessary cap space.

In a potential sign-and-trade, Wolfson has Cole Aldrich and Oklahoma City’s 2018 first round pick sent to the Pacers in exchange for Miles. The inclusion of a first round pick should convince the Pacers to move Miles. By trading Aldrich, the Wolves open up around 7 million dollars of cap space, which should be enough to sign Miles to a deal around three years, 36 million dollars.

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If Minnesota pulls of a Miles deal, they instantly win the offseason in my opinion. In Miles, the Wolves get a huge asset off the bench who is coming off a career-year. While he only produced 10.7 points and 3.0 rebounds per game, he was a top-20 three-point shooter after making 169 three-point shots at a career-high 41.3 percent clip. The 12-year veteran also has the ability to guard and play multiple positions, making him the ultimate 3-and-D winger.

Last season, the Timberwolves were not a great shooting team. In fact, they made the least amount of three pointers in the NBA. While the Wolves made huge moves in adding Jimmy Butler, Jeff Teague and Taj Gibson, none of those players are great shooters. With Miles, Minnesota finally gets a proven shooter that can help fix the Wolves’ shooting woes. Additionally, he gives the team a needed scoring option off the bench after having to renounce the rights to free agent Shabazz Muhammad as a result of the Gibson signing.

Yet, the Timberwolves have a couple complications when it comes to signing Miles.

First, Minnesota has reportedly offered Nick Young, otherwise known as Swaggy P, a contract. While the team could realistically sign Young at the room exception in addition to a Miles signing, the Wolves may be forced to improve a Young offer with the likes of the Golden State Warriors in on him. He also comes at a cheaper rate with no assets lost. Swaggy P can help the Timberwolves shooting after making 40.4 percent of his threes last season.

The other complication is the Wolves’ willingness to include a first round pick in a deal with the Pacers. The first round pick dealt would be the one acquired from the Utah Jazz in the Ricky Rubio trade. Given the pick is lottery protected and Minnesota’s roster is already full of young talent, I’d assume the Wolves are still okay with including the pick if there are no other options.

Nevertheless, Miles checks off everything the Wolves don’t have and need from a bench player. The ability to shoot and score, especially from the three-point line, and the ability to defend multiple positions effectively. If Minnesota pulls off the signing, Tom Thibodeau and GM Scott Layden have created a roster worthy of contender status in the Western Conference.

Next: Why Jeff Teague is a better fit than Ricky Rubio!

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