Kevin Garnett plans to play another season with the Timberwolves, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical. Doubt had lingered about whether Garnett, who’ll turn 40 next month, would continue to play even though he’s under contract for $8MM next season. Wojnarowski points to Garnett’s strong relationship with Tom Thibodeau, who’s finalizing a deal to become Minnesota’s coach and president of basketball operations. Thibodeau was a Celtics assistant coach for three years while Garnett was in Boston.
Next season will be Garnett’s 22nd, so he’ll break an all-time NBA record, assuming he indeed steps onto the hardwood. He didn’t play after January 23rd this past season because of soreness in his right knee. He averaged career lows of 3.2 points and 14.6 minutes per game before that, but he nonetheless started in all 38 of his appearances.
Wolves owner Glen Taylor seemed optimistic about Garnett’s return earlier this month, though former Garnett teammate Sam Mitchell, who spent this past season as Wolves coach, wasn’t so sure. Still, Garnett signed a two-year contract last summer without an option clause, so both sides are financially committed. They could conceivable arrange a buyout, but that doesn’t appear to be the plan. Instead, Garnett seems poised to resume his role as locker room leader for a youthful Timberwolves core that includes the last two No. 1 overall picks. Minnesota is in line for another high lottery pick this year.