Wolves Owner Says Ryan Saunders’ Job Is Safe

The Timberwolves aren’t considering a coaching change despite a frustrating start to the season, team owner Glen Taylor tells Charley Walters of The St. Paul Pioneer Press.

Minnesota is last in the Western Conference with a 3-11 record, second only to the Pistons for the worst mark in the league. However, Taylor doesn’t want to assess head coach Ryan Saunders‘ performance until the team has more time with Karl-Anthony Towns, who has missed 10 games because of a wrist injury and COVID-19. The Wolves are 1-9 without Towns.

“I haven’t even talked to (president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas) about that — he hasn’t brought it up,” Taylor said of a possible coaching change, “but you’re asking me, and it’s probably hard to tell a guy that you aren’t doing the job when your best guy isn’t playing.”

Taylor admits being disappointed with the way his team has played so far. Minnesota was expecting to be more competitive with Towns and D’Angelo Russell leading the franchise. The addition of top draft pick Anthony Edwards and an offseason deal for Ricky Rubio sparked hopes that the Wolves might be able to contend for at least a play-in spot.

“The team hasn’t done as well as I think anybody anticipated,” Taylor said. “We lost some games we thought we could win. Probably a couple of the young guys are doing better than we anticipated, and that’s good. But overall, you’ve got to win. Karl being out really hurts, because we just have no flow going yet.”

Taylor also commented on the lack of movement on a potential sale of the Wolves and the Lynx of the WNBA. He is reportedly seeking $1.5 billion for both teams.

“I haven’t found anything that for sure says I should move ahead,” Taylor said. “… The other question: Is now a good time to sell when you don’t have fans? And it’s not a good time.”

newest oldest

22 thoughts on “Wolves Owner Says Ryan Saunders’ Job Is Safe

  1. Sillivan

    Excluding draft picks
    For the past 3 years
    Wolves and Kings are getting worse year after year

    GMs need to improve significantly by trading offensive players for defensive players

    After getting rid of Butler and Covington, Wolves now need 4 defensive players

    • DrSeuss69

      its worse when your top guy (KAT) is garbage on defense and misses games.

  2. I have not seen him play but is Edwards as bad as his stats suggest? Or has he shown flashes but is just learning (or a little of both)?

    • mnsportsfan

      I would say a little of both. He has quite a bit of learning and improving to do.

      This is a huge cliche but if he works his butt if he’ll be a real stud.

  3. Simmons>Russ

    Team has always and will always suck.
    What team drafts the first overall pick and plays him off the bench every game.
    What team signs a back up point guard to be the third most expensive player on the roster behind an all star starter.
    What team has 5 SGs and only 1 PF

    Yea the coach sucks but also the GM sucks even way back with Kevin Love, even way back with Kevin Garnett.

    If Taylor wants to sell the team he should make it as appealing as possible. Trade Rubio for a starting PF (Julius Randle would be a great pick up), get a new coach that has some experience and reputation (Brett Brown, Kenny Atkinson, Mike DAntoni, Mark Jackson, Jason Kidd) and get a new GM who also has a better reputation and experience.
    You’ll have KAT Russell Edwards and Randle leading this team, 4 really good players, with the likes of Okogie and Culver who could grow into roles. All of a sudden you’ll start winning games and other owners will see this team as actually having a future

    • Acquiring Randle would cost a lot more than Rubio and probably more than the Wolves are willing (or should) give up.

      • Simmons>Russ

        Idk Randle on an expiring deal, on a team that is overachieving an probably should look to get worse to get a better pick.

        I’d say Randle and DSJ for Rubio and either Culver or Okogie should be fine. Maybe throw in a second round pick too if needed.

          • Simmons>Russ

            And what’s he done, paid Malik Beasley a bunch of money who just got arrested and is on drug and firearms chargers. Traded for Ricky Rubio even tho they just got DAngelo Russell, overpaid Hernagomez a bunch of money, didn’t bring in a PF, didn’t bring in a SF and hasn’t made a trade since.
            They draft Anthony Edwards a SG and he has been playing off the bench all season even with the team having only 3 wins and with multiplier games missed by Russell and KAT.
            They have what 5 SG’s, Edwards, Beasley, Okogie, Culver and Nowell…

            It’s just a very dysfunctional team and this new Gm hasn’t done anything good since he’s taken over just more of the same. Atleast the old GM tried, got in Butler for Thibs and then left after getting Dlo for KAT.

            • fishy 9 dogs

              Your comments make it clear you don’t actually follow the wolves. The GM you refer to that “got butler and dlo” played a minuscule role in that. Thibs was in control when he got butler and Layden had almost no part in getting DLo.

        • I don’t know, I guess I just don’t understand the trade from the Knicks’ perspective? If they’re going to trade Randle (which I honestly don’t know if they want to do anymore), I think they could get more than just ~1.5 seasons of Rubio.

          Dennis Smith has negative value, too, so it evens the deal up a little, but it’s not like the Knicks are in a rush to deal him.

          • Simmons>Russ

            I understand your point but at the end of the season when the Knicks have the 13th pick in the draft and have no good point guards to chose from and end up grabbing another Frank ntilikina type dude then it’s just more of the same. Plus you’ll have Randle who just had a career year about to hit FA do you pay him heaps and block up Toppins path or let him walk and in return get nothing for his good year?

            Hence why I said, now that Randle has built up his value trade him, make your team a little worse, open up more minutes for Toppin, Knox and other young guys. Take pressure of Barrett on both ends with Rubio who can facilitate and defend well. Not win as many games, hopefully get a pick in the top 5, draft a point guard like Cade Cunningham/Jalen Suggs or a quality forward like Jalen Johnson or Zaire Williams. Then next season you’ll have a young core of Barrett Toppin Robinson, a top 5 pick, plus hopefully Rubio could help Knox, and help Quickly.

            It’s about winning the long game not getting 10-15 more wins this season but more of the same

        • tjbarnaba

          Anyone who suggests a teams should try to “get worse to have a better pick” is so out of touch with what makes a winning organization. All your other opinions go out the window when you show a complete lack of understanding when it comes to team building.

          • Simmons>Russ

            Pretty sure Sixers lost on purpose “the process” in order to get better. GSW could’ve had Curry back end of last season but decided against it cause they wanted a better pick.
            Just wait and see then and the Knicks won’t actually get any better cause they wanted to win some more games this year

    • x%sure

      Rubio was not signed; he was traded for James Johnson and a few other assets either way. Of course that talent exchange could be
      criticized too.

      So they should do this, that & the other and they will be winners, and help Taylor sell the franchise. Ha. What if the Knicks don’t cooperate, or, the new GM should get more time or it looks like panic. I don’t even get why you’re taking the Wolves problems personally… and Rossas has been turning over the roster already.

    • kingsforever 2

      Rubio is most important than Randle. Wolves brought defense. The Russel Deal was a great bust. Russel have the better shooting but the defense fom Wiggins is so much better. Randle is a another scorer. Don’t important for this team

      • tjbarnaba

        Rubio is by far the most valuable player on the Wolves roster. Literally the only veteran on roster and the only leader in the building. They would have 0 wins without him and he can actually teach Russell how to play the game of basketball rather than iso iso iso iso iso iso iso. Baffles me how many people bother commenting without any understanding of the game or how teams are built.

  4. Walladipo and Wood

    They always say the coach’s job is safe before he gets fired.

  5. Bdd1967

    Until Taylor sells this team…guaranteed trip to nowhere every year. This coaching choice has got to be one of the worst. He was hired because of his last name. KAT is checked out mentally…can’t blame him though.

Leave a Reply