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Timberwolves players welcoming of Ryan Saunders’ insertion as interim head coach

Ryan Saunders, Timberwolves

It appears that the Minnesota Timberwolves are looking to quickly move on from the firing of former head coach and general manager Tom Thibodeau.

Ryan Saunders, a long-time member of the Wolves coaching staff, has been selected to take the reigns as the team’s interim head coach, and according to reports, he has the full backing of his players.

This is via Joe Krawczynski of The Athletic:

Players have respected Saunders’ work ethic and approachable nature, and he will enter his first head-coaching position with their respect and backing.

“He’s our captain now,” one player texted.

At 32 years of age, Saunders becomes the youngest active head coach in the league today. He takes the title from Los Angeles Lakers head coach Luke Walton, who is 38.

Saunders has been with the Wolves as an assistant coach since 2014. Prior to that, he spent five years as an assistant coach with the Washington Wizards.

Saunders is the son of Wolves legend Flip Saunders, who himself helped put the Wolves on the map. There is no doubt that this played a part in Ryan’s affinity with not only the team and the organization, but with the city as well.

The timing of Thibodeau’s firing came as a bit of a shock to most, but the fact that his replacement appears to be on the good graces of everyone connected to the organization will definitely help make the transition easier for the team.