Cole Aldrich wasn't the most sought-after center on the free-agent market, but the 27-year-old found a suitor looking for a cost-effective addition to provide depth to the frontcourt.
Marc Stein of ESPN reported Aldrich and the Minnesota Timberwolves agreed to a three-year, $22 million contract on Sunday.
On June 29, Brad Turner of the Los Angeles Times reported the Orlando Magic and Phoenix Suns were among those showing some interest in signing Aldrich. When Aldrich opted out of the final year in his deal with the Los Angeles Clippers earlier in the month, Turner spoke to a source who said the six-year veteran hoped to stay with the Clippers.
Aldrich's timing couldn't be much better. According to Basketball-Reference.com, he finished with a career-high 21.3 player efficiency rating this past year. In 60 games, he averaged 5.5 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.1 blocks.
NBA teams are willing to pay a relatively high price for rim protectors. The Sacramento Kings signed Kosta Koufos for four years and a little under $33 million last year, and the Cleveland Cavaliers sent two first-round picks to the Denver Nuggets in January 2015 for Timofey Mozgov.
Nobody considers Aldrich to be an elite rim protector, but the Timberwolves pick up solid depth at a good rate in Aldrich.