Handicapping the “field”

Posted on May 14th, 2009 – 1:33 AM
By Jerry Zgoda

OK, I see the faithful are getting restless for a new post, so, with a couple of days still left on vacation, I thought I’d throw up a new one tonight from Portland, Ore., quite possibly the current home of your next Timberwolves basketball boss.

Looks like I will miss nothing by being gone this week. If  I had to guess now, I’d say the Wolves don’t decide and announce anything until after Tuesday’s draft lottery and the way things are going, it wouldn’t surprise me at all if it extends beyond that.

Here’s the way I see the ongoing search (and the key word there is “ongoing”):

The favorite:

Tom Penn, Portland Trail Blazers assistant GM. There’s no doubt the Wolves were very hot on former Indiana GM David Kahn, until they started hearing from multiple people questioning whether they had thoroughly checked his past. Unlike Kahn, who last worked for the Pacers in 2002, Penn has been in the league since 1999, first eight years with Memphis, last two with Portland. Like Kahn, he’s more a guy from the financial end than personnel evaluation, which leads me to believe one of Glen Taylor’s primary objectives is to keep Fred Hoiberg in a prominent personnel role.

Don’t count him out: Hoiberg. The longer this goes on, the more likely one of the team’s two internal candidates — Jim Stack is the other — gets the job by default.

Long shots:

Randy Pfund, the former Miami GM looks like the most qualified candidate left (and I haven’t heard one way or the other that he’s out) after Dennis Lindsey withdrew a few weeks back, but I hear he made many demands for the job, which probably means Taylor won’t hire him.

Kahn, if the Wolves were going to hire him, I’m betting they would have done so by now.

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