It was going to happen at some point. I guess it’s better to happen now than wait two years for his contract to run out.
I write to you today with some momentous news. Earlier today, we decided to fundamentally change the direction of our team and trade Kevin Garnett. We acquired Al Jefferson, Gerald Green, Ryan Gomes, Sebastian Telfair, Theo Ratliff and two first-round draft picks from Boston. We’re excited about the new players that we have acquired and the potential that the new draft picks represent.
As with any great change, I am filled with mixed emotions. Sadness in seeing our franchise player depart but also great excitement in what the future holds. Our team is definitely young, but also extremely talented. Our core group of Randy Foye, Craig Smith, Rashad McCants, 2007 NBA Draft picks Corey Brewer and Chris Richard and the newly acquired players plus two future first-round picks have me energized about our long-term future.
Yes, I’ll miss Kevin Garnett. For 12 years Kevin has been the face of our franchise. We have all watched him grow and mature from “The Kid” into “The Big Ticket” right before our very eyes. I appreciate everything he has done for this franchise; the blood, the sweat and the tears that he has shed on our behalf. I wish only the best for Kevin and his family.
However, this move was made in the best interest of the Minnesota Timberwolves and regaining our place among the best teams in the NBA. During the past three years, we have struggled unsuccessfully to assemble a team around Kevin that could bring us back to the playoffs. These years have been hard on all of us. During this time it has become increasingly apparent to me that given the complicated formulas needed to move and acquire players, we needed greater flexibility. To move our team forward, we will need the flexibility this trade provides.
This past spring, I sat down with the team’s top executives and drafted a plan on how we wanted to rebuild our team. We evaluated our successes and failures over the years and looked to other franchises on how they built winning teams. The result of this reflection was the “Blueprint for the Future” that I shared with many of you. This plan outlined how we planned to rebuild our team. It was our acknowledgment that we had strayed from building a team that didn’t just speak of character, but rather lived it. A team more focused on working as a team than seeking individual recognition.
We took that first step today. We know it won’t be easy – nothing that is worthwhile ever is. We know that we are embarking on a journey that will be measured in years, not months. We understand that every team in professional sports is in a never-ending cycle of death and rebirth. I wholly believe that it is our time to give birth to a new team that will return our Timberwolves franchise to the elite of the NBA.
I appreciate your continued support as we undergo this transformation and urge you to follow our progress. I am convinced that you will like what you see and believe that it will mean only better days ahead. Please feel free to contact any of my staff with additional questions.
Regards, Glen Taylor