2019 NBA Offseason Salary Cap Digest: Minnesota Timberwolves

After ending a long playoff drought last spring, the Timberwolves took a step backward in 2018/19, as they were forced to move on from one of the players (Jimmy Butler) who helped them reach new heights. With franchise cornerstone Karl-Anthony Towns locked up for the next five years, there’s reason to believe Minnesota can have sustained success, but the club might first need to get out from under some pricey contracts for non-stars.

Here’s where things currently stand for the Timberwolves financially, as we continue our Offseason Salary Cap Digest series for 2019:

Guaranteed Salary

Player Options

  • None

Team Options

  • None

Non-Guaranteed Salary

Restricted Free Agents

Unrestricted Free Agents / Other Cap Holds

Projected Salary Cap: $109,000,000
Projected Tax Line: $132,000,000

Offseason Cap Outlook

  • Realistic cap room projection: $0
  • Even without accounting for any of their free agents or players on non-guaranteed salaries, the Timberwolves project to be over the cap this summer. They’ll go further over the cap if Towns is named to an All-NBA team, which would increase his salary by approximately $5.5MM. In that scenario, they’ll probably be more concerned with staying under the tax line than carving out any cap space.

Cap Exceptions Available

  • Trade exception: $2,667,600 (expires 11/12/19)
  • Mid-level exception: $9,246,000 4
  • Bi-annual exception: $3,619,000 4


  1. This is a projected value. Additionally, if Towns earns All-NBA honors, his projected salary would increase to $32,700,000.
  2. The salaries for two-way players don’t count against a team’s cap, but their cap holds do during the offseason.
  3. Brooks’ cap hold remains on the Timberwolves’ books because he hasn’t been renounced after going unsigned in 2018/19. He can’t be used in a sign-and-trade deal.
  4. These are projected values. In the unlikely event the Timberwolves use cap room, they’d lose these exceptions (and their trade exception) and would instead would gain access to the $4,760,000 room exception. Additionally, the Wolves will not be able to use these exceptions if their team salary exceeds the tax apron. In that scenario, they’d instead receive the taxpayer mid-level exception, worth a projected $5,711,000.

Note: Minimum-salary and rookie-scale cap holds are estimates based on salary cap projections and could increase or decrease depending on where the cap lands.

Salary information from Basketball Insiders and RealGM was used in the creation of this post. Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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7 thoughts on “2019 NBA Offseason Salary Cap Digest: Minnesota Timberwolves

  1. DynamiteAdams

    T-wolves are kinda stuck unless KAT and Wiggins both go off next year which is kinda unlikely.No free agent will want to go there especially when they wont get paid like they would anywhere else.

    • fishy 9 dogs

      Hardly any free agent has ever wanted to go there. Gotta build through the draft and hope wiggins bounces back this season. Can’t wait for Teague and Dieng to be off the books. I like Dieng, but not for 16 mil to play 14 minutes a game.

  2. x%sure

    The chances are not good for Towns making allNBA. ADavis played the 5 this year, along with Jokic, Vucevic, Embiid, & Gobert.

    • Still should make it, as AD hasn’t played much games, Embiid, KAT & Jokic will get the All-NBA nods, Vucevic close but not quite, Drummond was better than Gobert but all 3 of these are not really anywhere as near as good as KAT, as simple as.

  3. rxbrgr

    I believe C.J. Williams would have a higher cap hold since he’s not a rookie.

    • Luke Adams

      My understanding is that two-way cap holds are always worth the same amount, regardless of the player’s years of experience.

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