3:46pm: The Timberwolves have issued a statement regarding Brunson’s resignation, as Krawczynski relays at The Athletic.
“Our entire organization – made up of the Minnesota Timberwolves, the Minnesota Lynx and Iowa Wolves — is deeply committed to creating a safe work environment for our employees, partners and fans,” the Wolves’ statement reads. “Our teams strive to have our actions reflect our values each and every day. We work to maintain high standards of conduct and expect our staff to lead by example. We did not believe Mr. Brunson’s conduct was consistent with those standards.”
Sources tell Krawczynski that the most recent incident involving Brunson occurred during the playoffs, when a woman who doesn’t work for the Timberwolves lodged a complaint with the team after Brunson made “several unwanted advances” toward her.
2:50pm: Veteran NBA coach Rick Brunson has resigned from his position as an assistant coach on Tom Thibodeau‘s staff in Minnesota, per Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News (Twitter link).
It’s the fourth coaching change this week for the Timberwolves, who also cut ties with player development coach Vince Legarza, shooting coach Peter Patton, and assistant video coordinator Wes Bohn, as we relayed on Monday. However, Brunson’s departure appears to fall into a different category.
According to Jon Krawcyznski of The Athletic (Twitter link), Brunson was facing allegations of “improper interactions with several women while on the job.” Wolfson and ESPN’s Chris Haynes confirmed as much, with Haynes tweeting that one of those women is a member of the media.
A former NBA player, Brunson began his coaching career in 2007, and has also served as an assistant in Denver, Chicago, and Charlotte. He has run into legal troubles in the past, having been arrested in June 2014 and indicted on criminal sexual assault charges following an encounter with a massage therapist. Brunson was later acquitted of those charges.
While the Timberwolves, who hired Brunson in 2016, were willing to give him a second chance two years after that incident, he seems unlikely to catch on with another NBA team anytime soon.