NBA Free Agency 2011: Exploring Options at SG for the Minnesota Timberwolves

Joseph FafinskiCorrespondent IJune 10, 2011

DENVER, CO - APRIL 25:  Arron Afflalo #6 of the Denver Nuggets wipes his face with his jersey as he awaits action against the Oklahoma City Thunder in Game Four of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs on April 24, 2011 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado. The Nuggets defeated the Thunder 104-101 to stay alive as the Thunder lead the series 3-1 over the Nuggets. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Now that the Minnesota Timberwolves have grabbed hold of supposed-Spanish stud Ricky Rubio, it's clear that the starting lineup now only has two holes—center and shooting guard. Luckily for us, there are options this offseason.

Since I've already covered the former, let's take a stab at the second lurking problem.

Wesley Johnson, although the Wolves' best perimeter defender, really hasn't proved himself worthy of a spot in the starting five.

Since there really are no desirable shooting guards in the draft, we'll move right along to the free agency pool, where there is a plethora of available talent.

First, there are the untouchables. Honestly though, are there any that we have no real chance to attain?

I'd say Jamal Crawford might be just about the only one that is out of reach at this point and, realistically, do we want to give him eight figures for his offense? I didn't think so.

Maybe Jason Richardson would consider the T'Wolves, but then again, pigs might be able to fly.

In my opinion, there are a few underrated guys who might be willing to take their talents to Minnesota.

One of these ballers is Denver's J.R. Smith, a 25-year-old who will undoubtedly become a hot commodity in the free agent pool.

There is a downside to the 6-foot-6 Smith, though, and that has to do with his head. Essentially, he is a time bomb, ticking second by second, waiting to explode. His offensive talents might not overcome these possible outbreaks.

His teammate, Arron Afflalo, would be a much better fit in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, where his defensively ability coupled with his athleticism would be much appreciated here.

I'm hoping that teams underrate him and don't match the Nuggets' number so that he can potentially fall onto our lap, but I doubt that'll happen.

Another guy who is available is O.J. Mayo. If you paid attention to the Wolves around Christmas time, then you'll know we nearly dealt for him.

For now he seems focused on winning and playing only offense (despite a little boost in the playoffs), so I'm not sure he'd fit here.

The aging Richard Hamilton could be a decent option if he returns to his old form.

While I'm not entirely sure any of these are realistic possibilities, it should be noted that Afflalo is the best fit. If the Nuggets elect to keep Smith, then we should pounce all over the number they offer him.

On a final note, any thoughts on Allen Iverson making his comeback here?


Be sure to follow Joseph on Twitter at @JosephFafinski.