The Minnesota Timberwolves have added another point guard.
The Wolves and former Dallas Mavericks’ point guard J.J. Barea are putting the finishing touches on a four-deal that would give Minnesota another viable option behind rookie Rick Rubio at the point guard position.
Barea became a household name in June when he helped spark the Mavericks off the bench en route to defeating of the Miami Heat to win the 2011 NBA Finals.
This move would give the T’Wolves options to ship off or amnesty Luke Ridnour’s 4-year 16-million dollar contract he signed an offseason ago.
According to TNT and NBATV’s David Aldrige via Twitter:
Source: Timberwolves finalizing four-year deal with J.J. Barea. Check the Hang Time Blog.
Barea averaged career highs in both points per game (9.5) and assists per game (3.9) in 2010-11 as Jason Kidd’s primary backup point guard. Timberwolves’ starting point guard Ricky Rubio has often times been compared to Kidd, so it should be a similar role for Barea in Minnesota.
A times last season Barea would slide up and play the shooting guard position alongise Kidd when the Mavericks would go small. Although just 6’0” tall, Barea will give the Wolves creative options off the bench under new coach Rick Adelman.
The Timberwolves have also been linked to Atlanta Hawks’ shooting guard Jamal Crawford throughout this much abbreviated NBA offseason. Adding a player like Barea could make second-year wing Wes Johnson expendable in a potential sign-and-trade deal with the Hawks.
The amount for Barea is undisclosed at this point while the two sides put the finishing touches on the presumed four-year deal. But one can assume it will be in the 4-year 20-million dollar range. As we’ve learned, though, you can never be too certain about the economic size of a contract David Kahn is putting it together.
Brett is a Contributor to The Sports Bank. He covers all things Minnesota sports. You can follow him on Twitter @brettcloutier.
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