Detailed view of the Minnesota Timberwolves logo against the New Orleans Pelicans during the second half at the Smoothie King Center. Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

It hasn’t always been pretty, but the Minnesota Timberwolves have impacted the NBA since arriving in 1989. While they have yet to make it to the NBA Finals, they’ve served up some memorable teams and produced several great players, including Kevin Garnett

Here is our list of the 1o best Minnesota Timberwolves to ever lace’em up.

10. Jimmy Butler, forward

Although Jimmy Butler was only with the franchise for a little over one season, he still had an impact on the team. Butler is one of the few players on this list to lead this team to the playoffs without Kevin Garnett. Before his injury, Butler was averaging 22 points 5.3 rebounds, and 4.8 assists per game. One can only imagine as a T-Wolves fan what it would have been like had Butler stayed with this team a few more years.

9. Latrell Sprewell, forward/shooting guard

Latrell Sprewell came to the T-Wolves late in his NBA career but the franchise was on the upswing at the time and he became part of the league’s highest-scoring team in 2004. That same year the team would become the top seed in the Western Conference,  losing to the Kobe Bryant-led Los Angeles Lakers. During his first year with the T-Wolves, Spre would average nearly 17 points a game and four assists. In his final season with the team and in the NBA, he averaged 12 points a game and two assists. Even though he was at the end of his career, Sprewell still had a huge impact on this team.

8. Sam Cassell, point guard

Sam Cassell only spent two seasons with the T-Wolves but they were some very successful years. When he arrived in 2003, Cassell scored 19.8 points on 49% shooting, 7.3 assists, and 1.3 steals in 35 minutes per game. He was named to the All-NBA Second Team and voted into the 2004 NBA All-Star Game. He also helped lead the team to the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference with a 58-24 record. His time with the franchise was brief but he was a critical component of what remains one of the best eras in franchise history.

7. Stephon Marbury, point guard

Drafted by the Milwaukee Bucks, Stephon Marbury came to the Timberwolves via a trade and spent his first three NBA seasons with the squad. During his rookie season, Marbury averaged 15.8 points and 7.8 assists per game and was named to the 1997 All-Rookie Team. In the two subsequent years, he and Kevin Garnett helped lead the T-Wolves to their first NBA playoff appearance. He was eventually traded to the New Jersey Nets and played for five teams over his NBA career.

6. Wally Szczerbiak, small forward/shooting guard

Coming out of Miami Ohio, Wally Szczerbiak was an All-American and MAC Player of the Year, which is why the T-Wolves drafted him in 2000. Szczerbiak made the NBA All-Rookie Team that year and went on to be selected for the Western Conference All-Star Team in 2002. He tied a Timberwolves franchise record of 44 points in a game on April 13, 2003, though it has since been broken. Szczerbiak who was known as a sharpshooter, spent the first seven years of his NBA career with the T-Wolves and when his 10-year career ended, he had nearly 10,000 points and over 2,600 rebounds.

5. Anthony Edwards, shooting guard

Anthony Edwards is already making noise as one of the top players in the league. Edwards was the first-round draft pick of the Wolves in 2020. In his rookie season, he scored a then-career-high 42 points in a game, becoming the third-youngest player to score 40+ points in a game in NBA history. He finished second in Rookie of the Year voting and was named to the NBA All-Rookie First Team. In 2023, Edwards was named an NBA All-Star. He is well on his way to becoming a star and moving up this list.

4. Ricky Rubio, point guard

Ricky Rubio was drafted by the T-Wolves with the fifth pick in the 2009 NBA Draft but he didn’t arrive in the league until 2011. Rubio became the 10th player from Spain to play in the NBA and would make the NBA’s All-Rookie Team in his first season. Rubio’s best year with the team came in the 2016-2017 season when averaged nearly a double-double per game 11 points and nearly 10 assists per game. His initial stint with the Timberwolves lasted six seasons and he returned to the franchise for the 2020-2021 season as well.

3. Kevin Love, power forward/center

Kevin Love started as the first-round draft choice of the T-Wolves back in 2008. In his rookie season, he finished ninth in the league in rebounding and third in offensive rebounds, garnering a spot on the All-Rookie Second Team. A five-time NBA All-Star, he also garnered the MBA Most Improved Player honor in 2011. That year, he led the league in rebounding with an unheard of 15.2 boards per game, while also scoring 20 points per contest.  In his final year in a T-Wolves uniform, Love became the first player in NBA history to record 2,000 points, 900 rebounds, and 100 3-pointers in a single season. He went on to join LeBron James in Cleveland and win an NBA title, but his contributions to the Timberwolves are still remembered.

2. Karl-Anthony Towns, power forward

Karl-Anthony Towns is the driving force of the current Minnesota Timberwolves roster. Towns was NBA Rookie of the Year in 2016, a three-time All-Star, and was NBA three-point contest champ in 2022. In his rookie season, he averaged a double-double, averaging 18 points and nearly over 10 rebounds per game, unanimously winning Rookie of the Year. The following year, Towns made NBA history by becoming the only player to have at least 2,000 points (2,061), 1,000 rebounds (1,007), and 100 3-pointers (101) in a season. In 2018, Towns made his first appearance in the NBA All-Star game and led the team to the playoffs for the first time since 2004. Towns is the team’s franchise player and paid him as such back in 2018 signing him to a five-year $190 million contract.

1. Kevin Garnett power forward/center

Was there any doubt that Kevin Garnett was going to be No. 1? This man made the T-Wolves into the franchise they are today. He is a 15-time All-Star, the league’s MVP in 2004, a four-time NBA rebounding champ, and he’s on the NBA’s 75th Anniversary team. KG spent 12 seasons with Minnesota where he honed his reputation as one of the greatest power forwards in NBA history. When he retired, he did so as the only NBA player to reach at least 25,000 points, 10,000 rebounds, 5,000 assists, 1,500 steals, and 1,500 blocks. While he would eventually go on to win an NBA title with the Boston Celtics, he set the standard by which all future Minnesota Timberwolves players will be measured for a long time to come.

About Stacey Mickles

Stacey is a 1995 graduate of the University of Alabama who has previously worked for other publications such as Sportskeeda and Saturday Down South.