Glenn Taylor clearly hired the right people to run the Minnesota Lynx, who have won four WNBA titles under his leadership, and perhaps most impressively owns a thriving newspaper. In total, Taylor runs 80 businesses, he reminded reporters on Monday, and is worth $2.7 billion according to Forbes magazine.
27 years under his leadership of the Timberwolves, Minnesota’s NBA team is a league laughing stock. When veteran Patrick Beverly was traded from Memphis to Minnesota last month, their twitter mentions were divided between Excited Wolves Fans and fans of shadows every other nba team.
Not helping is the fact that Wolves began training camp on Tuesday, less than a week after the president of their basketball operations was abruptly fired, which Taylor told to kick off the team’s media day Monday in Minneapolis. addressed immediately.
“I think it’s really important that I remind you that the dismissal of some of the Timberwolves employees, legally we are not in a position to comment or make any comment on that,” he said. “So, don’t ask any questions along that line.”
More important is the fact that Taylor is beginning a slow transition from his role as principal owner of the Timberwolves, as Taylor has been a good mentor for Minnesota since purchasing the Wolves in 1994, a team he played for. For alone has been constant. Most have been terrible since their last and only playoff series win in 2004.
“I’m 80,” Taylor said on Monday. “I’m healthy, I plan to be around for a long time, but I’m realistic about the future.”
So it was that Wolves on Monday introduced billionaire entrepreneur Mark Lowrey and former Yankees all-star Alex Rodriguez as Taylor’s successor. He will take full control of the team after making the last three 20 percent purchases in 2023. Until then, they are part of a troika that calls the shots.
This is better than the status quo.
“Glenn is the controlling owner and the final decision will be with him,” Lor told reporters. “He’s already asking Alex and me for our input, and we’re involved in all the important decisions we’ve made so far.”
So, the freshmen were part of the sacking of the team’s president of basketball operations, Gerson Rosas. Perhaps. Because Taylor said last, it’s hard to understand whether this was the right move. Their personnel decisions – from Joe Smith to David Kahn – have been shoddy.
The only exception has been Flip Saunders, the former Gophers star appointed as head coach in 1995. He led the Wolves to eight playoff appearances in 10 seasons, but the team has been setting tires on fire ever since. Eight personnel directors, 11 head coaches and more players than anyone can remember without Google. One post-season appearance, one post-season win and one boss.
“It always falls on my shoulders. I accept,” said Taylor. “When things go well, I take credit for it, right?”
Who can remember? The Timberwolves’ only great season was in 2003–04, when they reached the Western Conference Finals before falling to the Los Angeles Lakers.
Being an active NBA owner takes care of what most of us understand, such as developing corporate partnerships and becoming an influential member of the league’s leadership committees. He was twice chairman of the NBA board of governors and in 2015 got Minneapolis $74 million — $56 million of the team’s — to update the goal center.
But Taylor was also suspended by Kevin McHale in 2000 after allowing Joe Smith to sign an illegal contract, and looked into his eyes and took Andrew Wiggins’ pulse. And if he didn’t pick a point guard with the fifth and sixth picks in the 2009 draft, or traded Jack LaVine, Chris Dunn and Jimmy Butler for a season to become Laurie Markkanen, a first-round pick, he would have taken those guys. Hired who did.
It looks like the Timberwolves have a good team on paper, but we are saying that the Timberwolves used No. 1 to draft Karl-Anthony Towns in 2015. Rosa is followed by Sanchin Gupta, who had come with Rosa from Houston. Change culture in Minnesota.
“As far as expected, nothing changes,” Gupta said.
true enough. Despite a ton of personnel moves over Rosace’s two-plus years—from getting seven(!) players on the 2020 trade deadline to the sacking of Ryan Saunders and replacing him with Chris Finch last February— Few if Timberwolves fans expect too much from this year. The team compared to those losing a combined 150 games over the past three seasons.
It may not be lost on Lore and Rodriguez, who are promising to keep the team in Minnesota, but, if history prefaces, eventually want a new arena to expand revenue and attract big-time talent. Huh. The current winning momentum won’t dampen it, and they face two crucial years to keep the team relevant while Taylor has veto power.
This may be their two biggest seasons as a Wolves owned.