The Minnesota Timberwolves have been relatively active in this year's offseason as they traded away Ricky Rubio to the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for Taurean Prince. And recently, they also sent Juancho Hernangomez and Jarrett Culver to the Memphis Grizzlies for veteran Patrick Beverley.
It is interesting to see that the TWolves traded away two Spanish players in a span of a month.
Tensions rose between Rubio and the TWolves organization because president for basketball operations Gersson Rosas allegedly did not allow Hernangomez to play for the Spanish team at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Rubio badly wanted Hernangomez to play for the national team as Juancho is a solid player who can spread the floor and cause problems for other teams. The Hernangomez situation might have played a hand in the recent trades that the TWolves were involved in.
In a recent podcast, Dane Moore recently talked about the Hernangomez and Rubio deals:
The Juancho situation was even worse than I think was publicly out there. The whole shutting everything down at the Olympics lead to some butting heads, lead to the Rubio trade pushed up even more. Rubio was very upset about Juancho not being able to play
In the Timberwolves' organization's defense, Rosas released a statement on why the team blocked Hernangomez and Rubio's requests:
We support our international players’ decisions to play with their National teams and appreciate the passion of Juancho and the Spanish Federation to represent their country. Unfortunately, we are dealing with an active injury,” said Rosas. “Based on our team physician’s recommendation, Juancho needs time to recover from and rehabilitate his injury, and that timeline restricts Juancho’s availability to participate in the Tokyo Olympics. The determined recovery plan is the best path forward to allow Juancho to heal properly
With all of this drama, how will this affect the Timberwolves organization in terms of free agency and player morale in years to come?