The Minnesota Timberwolves are heading into Thursday's draft with a fanbase unsure of what will become of their No. 18 and No. 58 picks. Minnesota might not even draft at either of these spots, with trades seeming a realistic possibility for the team which is out of the lottery for the first time since 2004.
With this uncertainty, should Wolves fans be confident that general manager David Kahn will make the right decisions on draft day? It helps to look at his track record, via Ray Richardson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
For those keeping score, Kahn is batting .500 with four top-six picks over the past three drafts. Thumbs up to [Ricky] Rubio and [Derrick] Williams. Thumbs down to [Jonny] Flynn and [Wesley] Johnson.
Given a do-over, the current Wolves could feature a backcourt tandem of Rubio and Stephen Curry, taken at No. 7 by Golden State in 2009, and a frontline featuring [Demarcus] Cousins, Williams and all-star Kevin Love. Cousins was chosen by Sacramento at No. 5; the Wolves took Johnson at No. 4.
And yet, Kahn has been spared criticism for the most part.
Kahn (KAAAAAAHN!) has often been an object of ridicule, so the last part of that blockquote is up for debate. But the Wolves' Syracuse selections of Flynn and Johnson certainly look misguided in retrospect. It's unfair to expect any organization to have a perfect draft record and you can play the draft do-over game with any team in the league, but when you're talking about picks in the top half of the lottery, just one big mistake is extremely costly.
Significantly upgrading your roster with the No. 18 and No. 58 picks is a lot more difficult than if you're in the lottery. Kahn has been hit or miss since 2009 and, if he wants to avoid hearing more about past misses, he'll need to makes his picks count this Thursday.
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