A prospective ownership group putting together an offer for the Timberwolves includes former NBA guard Arron Afflalo, two people with knowledge of the bid tell Pat Graham and Dave Campbell of The Associated Press.
According to the AP duo, venture capitalist Brock Berglund would be “spearheading the financing,” though the group would consist of two to five people with a combined net worth exceeding $10 billion. Afflalo would be the face of the group, which plans to submit its bid no later than this weekend, per Graham and Campbell.
The Associated Press’ report also notes that Afflalo’s group is a diverse one that is “seeking to place minorities in positions of power and uplift the community in the wake of the death of George Floyd.”
Previous reports indicated that former Timberwolves star Kevin Garnett is part of a group preparing a bid for the Timberwolves, now that team owner Glen Taylor is increasingly open to a sale. It doesn’t sound as if Garnett and Afflalo are part of the same group.
While Garnett’s connection to the franchise is obvious, Afflalo’s involvement in the bidding process is a little more surprising. The 34-year-old’s career earnings, per Basketball-Reference, totaled about $59MM, a fraction of Garnett’s $343MM. Additionally, Afflalo, who made his NBA debut in 2007 and spent 11 seasons in the league, suited up for six different teams, but the Wolves weren’t one of them.
Nonetheless, sources tell The Associated Press that the team wouldn’t be relocated if it’s sold to Afflalo’s group. Keeping the franchise in Minnesota has been a top priority for Taylor as he weighs his options.
It’s not clear what other bidders besides Afflalo’s and Garnett’s groups may be in the mix. The Wilf family – which owns the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings – was said to be interested, but despite some initial discussions, the Wilfs reportedly aren’t engaged in any active talks about purchasing the Wolves. Still,
Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic says (via Twitter) that there has been a “flood of interest” since word broke that Taylor is exploring a sale. Krawczynski notes that there were six of seven groups “already at the table” earlier in the week.