Thursday , Jun , 21 , 2007 Oly Sandor

Kevin Garnett Trade Denials Show The Worst Of Kevin McHale & Minnesota Timberwolves

Yes, it’s good the Wolves are considering a new direction by moving Garnett … In fact, Minnesota GM Kevin McHale gracefully side-stepped questions about the K.G. trade process … But where was this talent a few years back when assembling The Big Ticket’s supporting cast? … Click here for news and analysis …

The Associated Press reports that the aren’t actively trying to trade :

"At this time of year, all the teams are talking to each other," McHale said. "Everybody phones each other saying, ‘Hey what are you looking at? What are you doing?’

"We talk about a lot of different stuff and, unfortunately, some of that stuff seems to creep out or get speculated or, the best thing I like, things you haven’t even discussed are out there."

Garnett can opt out of his contract after next season, meaning the Timberwolves run the risk of losing him without compensation if they don’t trade him before then and he tires of not playing on a competitive team. That has ramped up speculation that he could be on the move, and the possible destinations — many of them completely baseless and unsourced — are popping up all over the place as they always do this time of year.

One thing that appears to be different this offseason is McHale’s acknowledgment of conversations involving his star player. Where in the past, he has completely dismissed questions of Garnett’s availability — including after last season when he said emphatically, "We’re not going to trade Kevin Garnett" — McHale is now qualifying those remarks.

But he said Friday that he has always listened to proposals from other teams.

"What, do you think I hung up on them when they called?" McHale quipped in his typical tone. "Nothing has changed. You always listen. You listen, and it doesn’t go very far and it hasn’t gone very far now."

My Quick Take: I think Kevin McHale missed the boat when picking his career after retiring from the Celtics.

I’m not trying to be a smart-ass. But McHale is walking the gray area like the illest of lawyers.

When, not if, the T-Wolves release McHale, he should enroll in law school. He’s got a bit of Matlock in him.

Want proof of McHale’s potential as a litigator? Check out his tactic when talking to reporters about the Kevin Garnett rumors. He’s arguing the Wolves technically aren’t shopping K.G. because other GMs are making the first call.

Of course, the team can’t publicly admit to shopping Garnett. But talk about a technicality. I guess the Wolves need an out if they can’t deal The Big Ticket, which is a strong possibility when reflecting on Minnesota’s track record.

But why hasn’t McHale shown this savvy when making past personnel decisions?

McHale and the Wolves should have invested this energy in finding a supporting cast to play with Garnett. Instead of talking like lawyers, they would be talking about NBA Titles.

Click here to read and subscribe to Oly Sandor’s NBA blog.