When Minnesota opens up its 25th Anniversary season Wednesday against its sister team from Orlando, fans will have more to celebrate than the milestone the organization has reached.
The Timberwolves will be staying in the Great Lakes State for a long time to come.
The city of Minneapolis and the Timberwolves have agreed to a $100 million renovation of the 23-year-old home of the Timberwolves. The deal also includes an extension of the team's lease with the team until 2032. The deal still requires city council approval.
The Timberwolves have played at Target Center in the heart of downtown Minneapolis since it opened in 1990. The building was renovated in 2004. However, the stadium still seemed a bit outdated and attendance has been mixed. The team's struggles certainly do not help that out. The team was 23rd in the league in attendance last year. The Wolves have not been to the playoffs since Kevin Garnett was traded.
Target Center will get a facelift on both the outside and inside as the city tries to increase traffic flow and modernize the stadium. It is connected by the skyway to downtown Minneapolis and to the nearby Target Field, the Twins' new home. Compared to other NBA stadiums, Target Center was simply not up to stuff.
More importantly, the city and team's commitment to the stadium will keep Wolves fans happy. The new lease will all but guarantee the team will not be the center of any relocation rumors for a very, very long time. Often when relocation is brought up, the Timberwolves are mentioned because of the team's overall struggles with attendance and on the court. Minnesota does not have that to worry about anymore.
And entering the 25th Anniversary season for the franchise, the Wolves have a lot to be happy about. Kevin Love, Ricky Rubio and Kevin Martin lead an organization hungry to break through and make the Playoffs at long last. Even in a competitive Western Conference, it is very possible the team accomplishes this goal.